The July 4 holiday weekend was stressful for those traveling by plane. On Friday, the airline industry had over 11,000 delayed flights. American Airlines delayed over 1,000 flights amidst a technical error. On Saturday, there were around 3,000 canceled flights.
The major reason for the delays and cancelations was a glitch in the American Airlines system. Over 12,000 fights had not been assigned a captain throughout the month of July. The glitch allowed pilots and co-pilots to drop their scheduled flights.
American Airlines stated:
“We have become aware of a technical issue with our Trip Trade with Open Time System (TTOT). We understand these are important tools for our pilots and are working as quickly as possible. We will provide updates throughout the day as we learn more.”
In 2017, a similar problem occurred, with airlines offering to pay pilots double to come to fly. A similar offer has not yet been made.
Thunderstorms and staff shortages have already been a factor in travel interruption this summer. William McGee – a senior fellow for aviation at American Economic Liberties Project stated, “Certain jobs cannot be filled quickly, nor should they be when it’s as critical as, you know, pilots…And so now we have this shortage. There’s just no way it’s going to be fixed this summer.”