Budget cuts cause delays at Honolulu International Airport

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Airports across the country are seeing a bit of a delay on Monday.

Thousands of air traffic controllers are being forced to take an unpaid day off due to federal budget cuts.

Under the cuts — which went into effect on Sunday — 15,000 air traffic controllers will lose one day of work every other week.

Currently, some of the nation’s busiest air traffic hubs including New York, Washington, and Los Angeles, are seeing delays of more than two hours.

Some airlines warn that up to 6,700 flights per day could be impacted.

The cuts are also affecting travelers locally.

Transportation officials say no flights leaving Hawaii were delayed on Monday, but at least five flights coming from the mainland were delayed. That includes United flight 201 from Houston.

Houston was not listed as one of the airports expecting big delays.

The flight from Houston departed almost an hour late. Passengers had to deal with that delay on top of the more than eight-hour direct flight to Honolulu.

KHON2: “What did they say the reason was?”

Passenger Frank Lietke: “Because of the budget cuts and the furloughs with the FAA.”

“We’d seen in the papers this morning, so we knew the furloughs could affect the travel times today,” passenger Tina Nezat said.

“The captain actually did a very good job and so did all the flight attendants. They came on and let us know the status and updates,” passenger Tim Vanzant said.

Passengers also said the captain told them if they didn’t like the furloughs and delays, they could go online to sign a petition.

The petition was created by Airlines for America, which is an advocate for the industry. Click HERE to sign the petition.

The FAA says it is trying to work with the airlines and minimize delays.

They advise travelers to check their flight status before heading to the airport.

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