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Neon Tommy - Annenberg digital news

LAX Travelers Face Third Day of Sequestration Delays

Kat Bouza |
April 23, 2013 | 11:53 a.m. PDT

Executive Producer

Los Angeles International Airport (Neon Tommy)
Los Angeles International Airport (Neon Tommy)
Travelers flying in and out of Los Angeles International Airport were faced with more delays Tuesday morning as the Federal Aviation Administration attempted to address issues stemming from the agency's sequestration-related budget cuts.

CBS Los Angeles reports that, as of 5 a.m., 60 percent of departing flights and 20 percent of arriving flights experienced significant delays. By 11:30 a.m., less than 10 percent of arrivals at LAX were delayed, compared to over 30 percent of departures.

The FAA slashed over $600 million from its operating budget as a result of government spending cuts. Most of these cuts came through a reduction of employee work hours. 

LAist notes that, of the 47,000 FAA employees affected by the furloughs, 15,000 are air traffic controllers. These cuts, according to the Los Angeles Times, require controllers to take one upaid day off every two weeks.

Although furloughs against air traffic controllers took effect on Sunday, Monday marked the first day that the cuts caused considerable delays in airports across the United States. Flightstats.com, a website that tracks airport performance, stated that over 10 percent of US-based flights experienced delays Monday.

But CBS News stated, effects from staff reductions at LAX were felt beginning on Sunday, leaving many travelers delayed for upwards of three hours.

FAA officials told LAX passengers that Sunday's delays were related to a "traffic management program," according to CBS Los Angeles

In a statement released Sunday, the agency stated they will be "working with the airlines and using a comprehensive set of air traffic management tools to minimize the delay impacts of lower staffing" over the next few weeks.



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