Published: Fri, December 01, 2017
Markets | By Erika Turner

Computer glitch leaves American Airlines scrambling for pilots during holidays

Computer glitch leaves American Airlines scrambling for pilots during holidays

American Airlines Group said it has found pilots to staff all but "a few hundred" flights during next month's holiday season, easing concerns of major disruptions a day after a scheduling-system snag raised the possibility that as many as 15,000 would lack aviators.

"We are actively working to resolve this problem, and we should avoid cancellations during the holiday period", however, has assured the company, to the effect that she had "drivers reserve" to the end of the year and that it proposed to pay 150% more for each hour worked to attract potential candidates.

"That number of open flights continues to decrease thanks to our pilots who are stepping up to the plate and picking up trips to ensure customers are taken care of", Aran Coello said in a statement.

American Airlines will operate about 200,000 flights throughout the month, a busy time for travelers going home for the holidays.

American Airlines now flies to Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Seoul and Tokyo from Dallas-Forth Worth, and to Beijing, Shanghai and Tokyo from Chicago O'Hare Airport.

CBS News reached out to American for comment and they confirmed they are addressing the issue.

American Airlines says that it is working to fill scheduled flights this holiday season, after a scheduling error allowed pilots to drop their scheduled flights. In addition, we have more reserve pilots on hand in December than normal months and they provide us with the ability to fly numerous trips that are now uncovered.

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"The system went from responsibly scheduling everybody to becoming Santa Claus to everyone", APA spokesman Dennis Tajer said to CNBC Wednesday. You want the days off?

However, American's pilot union, the Allied Pilots Association, expressed a contrary view, saying it has not agreed to any resolution, and complaining the company had not sought input from its members in crafting a solution.

The Fort Worth, Texas-based carrier is offering pilots 1.5 times their normal hourly wage to pick up some of the flights, the top rate laid out in their contract, Miller said.

"In addition, we have more reserve pilots on hand in December than normal months, and they provide us with the ability to fly numerous trips that are now uncovered", spokesman Matt Miller said.

Mr Tajer added: "I'm watching a 'Grinch that stole Christmas" thing happening.

Management disclosed the error on Friday, the union said in a statement on its website. It also has a higher-than-normal number of pilots on reserve during December who will fill "a good chunk" of the affected flights, he said.

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