American Airlines glitch gives pilots holiday at Christmas

Major airline slips up over annual leave

Major airline slips up over annual leave

American Airlines, which operates 6,700 flights a day, has found itself in a scheduling mess after a programing glitch allowed too many pilots to go on leave during peak travel days.

A glitch in the computer system American Airlines pilots use to schedule time off raised concerns this week that many planes would lack pilots and other essential personnel.

The affected flights are between December 17-31 and management say the airline expects to have the problem resolved before the holiday season. APA and management have reached an agreement in principle addressing our respective needs, and we have withdrawn our grievance.

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A letter sent to pilots earlier this week and obtained by CBS News showed the bulk of the holes in the schedule were in late December.

A version of this article appears in print on, on Page B4 of the NY edition with the headline: Airline Error Puts Flights In Jeopardy.

But it turned out to be too good to be true, and Tajer said more than 15,000 flights between December 17 and December 31 were without a captain, first officer or both, assigned to fly the plane.

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The flights that now have no scheduled pilots originate from cities including Boston; Charlotte, N.C.; Washington; Dallas-Fort Worth; New York; Miami; Chicago; and Philadelphia, Mr. Overman said. It has since been fixed. "And here's hoping the folks running the airline come to us and are willing to sit down and work through it, because we don't have a solution at this point".

"We are working diligently to address the issue and expect to avoid cancellations this holiday season", said airline spokesman Matt Miller.

Roughly 30 million people are expected to fly during the busy holiday season.

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