Los Angeles — As the holiday season approaches, two major US airlines face a potential pilot shortage, which could be exacerbated by mandatory vaccines, according to some unions representing pilots.
Not only are more passengers expected to fly this year, but airlines are rapidly approaching federal vaccine obligations to their employees.
Airline employees must be vaccinated by December 8th, as regulated by the Biden administration, even earlier for American employees, November 24th, the day before Thanksgiving.
“There were some comments from the Southwest Airlines pilot union that there may not be enough pilots to operate flights during Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays. The American pilot union issued a similar statement. “We did,” said Henry Hartebert, a travel industry analyst.
Captain Eric Ferguson, President of the United Pilot Association, This represents 15,000 American Airlines pilots“American Airlines management continues to be involved in the APA in all pandemic-related matters, including vaccine obligations,” the statement issued.
The union has extended its November 24 deadline and “the same alternative to vaccines expected to be granted under the expected OSHA emergency rules for companies with 100 or more employees” Ferguson said he wanted to be in.
“This ensures the same level of security while preventing industry instability on the eve of the next holiday season,” Ferguson added.
Over the weekend, travelers were dissatisfied with Southwest Airlines canceling more than 2,000 flights, indicating that it could be the beginning of more cancellations and delays for more airlines in the near future. ..
“For American and Southwest passengers, you need to be prepared for a chaotic Thanksgiving and Christmas,” said Harteveldt.
Harteveldt said Southwestern and Americans are pushing to vaccinate more pilots, but the two companies have yet to reveal how much progress they have made.
“I want to travel this Thanksgiving and Christmas, but I can. I have to think twice about the airline of my choice,” added Harteveldt.
Vaccine mandate could cause pilot shortage, unions claim Source link Vaccine mandate could cause pilot shortage, unions claim