Alaska Airlines will offer COVID-19 testing to passengers bound for Hawaii, partnering with Carbon Health to provide the service at pop-up clinics, starting in Seattle and eventually rolling out in other West Coast cities. Lt. Gov. Josh Green said the Hawaiian government is working with Alaska Airlines, United Airlines, Hawaiian Airlines, CVS, American Airlines and Kaiser Permanente to iron out the details of testing arrangements for travelers seeking to meet the state's quarantine rules.
As Hawaii prepares to reopen its borders to tourists Oct. 15, Hawaiian Airlines is resuming service from Honolulu to Las Vegas, with Oakland and San Jose, Calif., and Phoenix following Nov. 1. The airline, which is providing COVID-19 testing for passengers in San Francisco and Los Angeles, will also increase service from those cities as well as Portland, Ore.; Sacramento, Calif.; Seattle and San Diego.
Tens of thousands of airline employees face furloughs today as lawmakers failed to agree on additional relief for airlines. American Airlines and United Airlines said they have been forced to move forward with furloughing 19,000 and 13,000 employees, respectively. Airline executives said the companies could reverse the layoffs, but only if an agreement on continued payroll aid is imminent.
A4A President and CEO Nick Calio spoke with CNN's Julia Chatterley to outline the devastating impact to the airline industry and its employees following the expiration of the Payroll Support Program. Calio highlighted that thousands of involuntary furloughs will take place due to the number of jobs connected to airlines. "It is our fervent hope that [Speaker Pelosi and Secretary Mnuchin] think about these employees who are losing their jobs, what it means to them on a human level, on a day-to-day and frankly, what's it's going to mean to our economy," Calio said of ongoing negotiations between lawmakers and the Administration. "We don’t need good intentions. We need a law to pass."
Airlines will be forced to make adjustments or reductions to service in smaller markets as a result of thousands of employees being furloughed as federal aid expired at midnight on Sept. 30. While US airlines implemented significant self-help measures since the start of the pandemic, passenger traffic remains down around 70% from 2019, leading airlines to further reduce workforces, including pilots, flight attendants mechanics, ramp workers and others.
Canadian regulators have approved the ID NOW rapid test for COVID-19, and Air Canada is obtaining 25,000 for voluntary employee testing while continuing a pilot program of passenger testing in Toronto. "We believe testing will be key to protecting employees and customers until such time as a COVID-19 vaccine is available" and "rapid testing is also a means to enable governments to relax current blanket travel restrictions and quarantines in a measured way while still safeguarding the health and safety of the public," said Dr. Jim Chung, Air Canada's chief medical officer.
Airline cargo revenue has become a more important factor for airlines such as United and Air Canada, and freight demand is even influencing flight schedules. Meanwhile, United is adopting new technologies to bolster its ability to handle shipments of sensitive medical supplies.
A&Ps Mike Busch, Paul New, and Colleen Sterling answer questions about corroded control cables, the right oil for engine break in, pesky fouled plugs, and just how far can you push back on your annual during this month's aviation maintenance podcast.
Greensburg Municipal Airport in Indiana will utilize a $4.7 million grant from the Federal Aviation Administration to build a new runway. Also in Indiana, Indy South Greenwood Airport will enlarge the apron with $353,333 in FAA funding.
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