September 26, 2022

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Are you angry about flight cancellations and travel delays?  Blame it on Florida

Are you angry about flight cancellations and travel delays? Blame it on Florida

The Sunshine State has cast a shadow over air travel.

Skin rash Nationwide flight cancellations and delays Exacerbated by travel difficulties to and from Florida, according to a report.

About a third of all flights from every major airline cross Florida’s airspace, but pilots are at the mercy of elements beyond their control — from choppy weather to air traffic that is routinely crowded with military jets and missile launches — airline officials say.

Staff shortages – at airports and airlines – have also crippled the industry after the lifting of lockdown measures linked to the pandemic. All together, it creates a perfect storm of travel chaos that has left flyers frustrated.

“It was a block and a half,” Andrew Levy, CEO of Startup Avelo Airlines, He told the Wall Street Journal.

Levy described the difficulty of expanding into Florida, where delays sometimes forced pilots to wait hours on the ground before they could take off.

“It created huge problems for us.”

Inclement weather, a shortage of airline staff and insufficient air traffic controllers have exacerbated the problems for air travel in Florida this year.
SOPA/LightRocket Images via Gett

Florida is one of the most popular vacation destinations in the country, but its airports seem to have a hard time handling the volume of passengers arriving.

Federal data released in June showed the four major airports in the Sunshine state — Orlando, Fort Lauderdale, Tampa and Miami — They were among the top five for worst upcoming flight on time.

Only Newark Airport in New Jersey, which ranked first in Lowest on time arrivalbeat the Florida hubs.

Orlando, which had the second-worst percentage of on-time arrivals, saw more than 1,200 incoming flights canceled from the start of this year through June 14, according to federal data. In the whole of 2019, there were just over 560 cancellations.

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Beach-goers walk along the shoreline in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Beach-goers walk along the shoreline in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
AP

Cancellation and delay rates It was also above the national average In busy hubs like Palm Beach and Fort Myers.

Spirit Airlines, the popular low-cost airline, was unhappy with the lack of staff at the Air Traffic Control Center in Jacksonville.

Matt Klein, the airline’s chief commercial officer, said in a recent earnings call that the company is “restricted to the number of flights we can operate to the Jacksonville Air Traffic Control Center.”

Spirit said Florida accounts for 40% of its flights in the continental United States.

“If this limitation were not in place, Florida to the continental United States would probably be closer to 50% of our network,” Klein told investors.

Passengers waiting to board a JetBlue plane at a terminal at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport.
Passengers waiting to board a JetBlue plane at a terminal at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport.
Getty Images

Spirit, which agreed late last month to sell itself to JetBlue for $3.8 billion, reported a second-quarter net loss of $52.4 million.

The Federal Aviation Administration told the newspaper that it plans to increase the number of staff at Jacksonville Airport.

The agency also said it plans to hire 1,500 new air traffic controllers nationwide starting in the next fiscal year on October 1.

“Where demand increases, the FAA is adding additional controllers,” the FAA told the newspaper.