American Airlines glitch gives pilots holiday at Christmas

A computer glitch with the world’s largest airline means American is scrambling to schedule pilots into planes

The Christmas season is already a chaotic time for many people, but a computer glitch could make things even more difficult for American Airlines and anyone scheduled to fly with them next month.

A problem with the company’s employee scheduling system has allowed many pilots to schedule vacation days during the Christmas week and now thousands of flights do not have assigned pilots.

According to the Allied Pilots Association, the union representing the 15,000 pilots who fly for American Airlines, a failure within the system has produced “significant holes” in the operation.

The affected flights are between Dec. 17-31 and management say the airline expects to have the problem resolved before the holiday season. But that means American will have to rebuild its schedule and is offering pilots time and a half their normal hourly wage.

However, the company is also believed to have a large number of pilots on reserve who could be called on if needed to help smooth out the schedule.

The APA has filed a grievance with the company as they say “management unilaterally created their solution in violation of the contract, neither APA nor the contract can guarantee the promised payment of the premium being offered.”

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