Airports Need More Air Traffic Controllers

By: KKCO Email
By: KKCO Email

Airplane near–misses, it's exactly what it sounds like.

It started with a congressional report last week about the number of near misses above, or on, the nation's runways.

Now the nation's air traffic controllers are calling for immediate action by the F.A.A.

There was a close call Sunday at New York's JFK airport
Pilots of two jets were set for perpendicular landings, until they and the tower saw the chance of a collision. The pilots pulled up,
The air traffic controllers' union is now asking for an emergency meeting with the head of the F.A.A.

They say the problem is too many flights, and too few controllers who in some cases work ten hour days and six–day weeks. At JFK, the number of controllers is down forty percent, while air traffic allowed by the F.AA. is up forty percent.

The National Transportation Safety Board says it's disappointed the F.A.A isn't moving faster to deploy radars, and collision warning systems, to alert pilots they're in the wrong place at the wrong time.

The NTSB, the controllers' union and lawmakers all call for quick action, but it's not clear the F.A.A. sees a problem. A spokesman called the incident at JFK “a nonevent.”

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