Miami, Florida – JetBlue Airways is reducing its schedule by about 1,280 flights from Thursday through January 13, due to a growing number of crew members falling sick from COVID-19 infections.
“We expect the number of COVID cases in the northeast — where most of our crewmembers are based — to continue to surge for the next week or two,” a JetBlue spokesperson said in a statement. “This means there is a high likelihood of additional cancellations until case counts start to come down.”
The 1,280 flights amount to about 10% of JetBlue’s schedule.
Due to COVID-19 infections and bad weather in parts of the country Airlines have been canceling hundreds of flights every day in the United States since Christmas Eve as they grapple with staff shortages.
JetBlue is based in New York, which recorded a new record high of 67,000 positive cases on Tuesday.
According to FlightAware, more than 1,000 flights have been canceled within, into, or out of the US as of Thursday.
JetBlue canceled 17% of its flights Thursday with another 4% of flights delayed.
Amid record-breaking numbers of COVID-19 cases in several European nations, European airlines are also canceling a small number of flights.
According to German airline Lufthansa, it will cancel 10% of its winter flight schedule as the pandemic continues to hit the aviation industry.
Due to “a sharp drop in bookings” the airline will have to cancel 33,000 flights from mid-January to February 2022 or 10% of the group’s winter flight schedule, Lufthansa CEO Carsten Spohr said.