Due to a technical glitch, American Airlines is finding itself short on pilots for the upcoming holidays. The airline uses a computerized scheduling system to handle pilot vacation requests, and there appears to have been a bug. The software is designed to process all leave requests and either approve or deny based on seniority and flight coverage. Unfortunately, the software had an issue that resulted in too many requests being approved from December 17th through the 31st.
According to Bloomberg the pilot’s union is estimating over 15,000 flights are currently affected. American Airlines has acknowledged the shortage but has refused to discuss the number of flights. American Airlines believes that the issue will be resolved and that no cancellations will be necessary.
To resolve the issue American Airlines is offering any pilot willing to give up their time off 150% of their normal hourly salary. The Allied Pilot’s Association, however, this deal was made in violation of the union contract. As a result the union has filed a grievance to find a solution that will not violate their labor agreement.
At this time there is no reason to panic. Chances are American Airlines will come to a solution that will leave everybody happy, and no planes on the ground. If you haven’t made your holiday travel plans yet, contact us today.