18 September, 2023

US FAA cuts minimum flight requirements at New York airports

Citing air traffic controller staffing issues, U.S. regulators announced on Friday they will again extend cuts to minimum flight requirements at congested New York City-area airports through October 2024, giving relief to airlines who faced delays because of government staffing issues, reports Reuters. 

Under minimum flight requirements, airlines can lose their takeoff and landing slots at congested airports if they do not use them at least 80% of the time. The waiver allows airlines to not fly some flights and still retain slots.

The FAA said the number of certified controllers at the New York Terminal Radar Approach Control (N90) "is still not sufficient to allow the FAA to handle normal traffic levels,"

The FAA said it continues working "on a long-term solution to solve the chronic low levels of fully certified air traffic controllers at N90."

Airlines for America, an industry group, said it appreciated "this latest waiver extension as the FAA navigates air traffic controller staffing shortages... U.S. airlines will continue to operate larger aircraft to help reduce pressure."