Omicron: nearly 6,000 flights canceled worldwide over Christmas weekend

Omicron: nearly 6,000 canceled flights around the world on the weekend of No & euml; l

MISE & Agrave; DAY

NEW YORK | Nearly 6,000 flights were canceled by airlines as thousands more were delayed around the world over Christmas weekend, with the Omicron variant of COVID-19 disrupting travel during the holidays.

According to the Flightaware website, there were more than 2,650 flight cancellations at 3 p.m. on Saturday, 940 of which were United States-related trips, whether international or internal.

More than 6,350 flights were also delayed across the world.

As of Friday, around 2,400 cancellations and nearly 11,000 delays had been recorded according to the same source, which already has more than 900 planned cancellations. Sunday. & nbsp;

Pilots, flight attendants and other staff have had to be quarantined after being exposed to COVID-19, forcing Luftfthansa, Delta and United Airlines to cancel flights./p>

According to Flightaware, United Airlines had to cancel around 439 flights on Friday and Saturday, or about 10% of those that were scheduled. & nbsp;

“The peak of Omicron cases across the country this week has had a direct impact on our crews and the people who manage our operations,” said the American company, which said it was working to find solutions for passengers. affected.

Delta Air Lines also canceled more than 300 flights on Saturday, and 170 the day before, again according to Flightaware, citing both Omicron and, occasionally, adverse weather conditions. “The Delta teams have exhausted all options and resources” before it comes to these cancellations, the airline argued.

More than ten Alaska Airlines flights, employees of which have said “have been potentially exposed to the virus” and had to self-isolate in quarantine, were also canceled.

Chinese airlines most affected

Chinese airlines are behind highest number of cancellations: China Eastern cut around 540 flights, more than a quarter of its flight plan, while Air China canceled 267 flights, also nearly a quarter of its scheduled departures.

These cancellations disrupt the desire to resume travel this year for the holidays, after a Christmas 2020 hit hard by the pandemic.

According to estimates by the American Automobile Association, more than 109 million Americans were expected to leave their immediate area by plane, train or car between December 23 and January 2 – a 34% increase from last year.

Fortunately, these disruptions had no consequences for Santa's tour, which has been closely followed for decades by the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD).

The NORAD counted exactly 7 & nbsp; 623 & nbsp; 693 & nbsp; 263 gifts distributed this year, after having followed the course of the sled thanks, explains the organization, to a sensor placed in the nose of one of the reindeer.

This tradition finds its origin in a telephone confusion. In 1955, a Colorado newspaper, wanting to publish the number of a telephone line supposed to allow children to call Santa Claus, had mistakenly printed that of the military command, which then decided to take the game.


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