The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) plans to cut air traffic control tower staffing by 10 percent at major hubs across the country because of these mandatory budget reductions.

Depending on the time of day, weather conditions, runway configuration, and single or multiple control towers in use, passenger flights could be delayed anywhere from 10 minutes to 3 hours according to a study made by the FAA on March 29th at several major airports.

Below are examples from the study:

· Los Angeles International: Average delay: 10.1 minutes. Maximum delay: 67 minutes.

· Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson: Average delay: 11.3 minutes. Maximum delay: 210 minutes.

· Chicago O’Hare: Average delay: 50.4 minutes. Maximum delay: 132 minutes.

· New York City’s LaGuardia: Average delay: 30.5 minutes. Maximum delay: 80 minutes.

· New York City’s John F. Kennedy: Average delay: 12 minutes. Maximum delay: 50 minutes.

Absent any legislative action, the furlough and its impact are expected to continue through the end of the federal fiscal year, Monday, September 30.

“We are in a wait and see situation,” explained Karen Ramsdell, Santa Barbara Airport Director. “We don’t foresee delays out of SBA at the present time, but due to the fact our non-stop flights to San Francisco, Denver, Seattle, Phoenix and Los Angeles are major hubs, passengers should be aware if they are traveling farther than those non-stop destination, their travel plans could be affected.”

Airline passengers can go to the FAA’s Air Traffic Control System Command Center to get an up to the minute overview of flight delay information for the major airports throughout the United States.

For a live flight schedule regarding flights into and out of the Santa Barbara Airport, please go to or download our free SBA App.


Please note this login is to submit events or press releases. Use this page here to login for your Independent subscription

Not a member? Sign up here.