Impact of FAA furloughs felt across nationwide - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Impact of FAA furloughs felt across the country

Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport officials say they've been left in the dark as to what the furloughs mean for their airport. Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport officials say they've been left in the dark as to what the furloughs mean for their airport.
SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) -

Airports up and down the East Coast reported significant delays on the first business day in which thousands of Federal Aviation Administration employees are being forced to take unpaid time off.

The furlough days are a result of mandatory federal budget cuts that went into place on March 1. All 47,000 FAA employees will be required to take one unpaid day off every other week.

Flight delays were seen in airports across the country, but the most significant ones took place in Washington, Baltimore and New York. At this point, Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport officials say they've been left in the dark as to what this means for their airport. WTOC spoke with several passengers on Monday traveling to New York and Washington who said their flights were delayed significantly.

"It's frustrating, you know. We spend a lot of money in taxes and now they do this. Our government needs to get their act together that's for sure. I'm going to sit around here for five hours waiting now," Gary Wright said. Wright was scheduled to take a flight from Savannah to Washington, DC  to Chicago. His flight to Washington was delayed so much, he had to cancel it and take a direct flight to Chicago instead.

Todd Wishart was unaware of the furloughs, but said that explains why his family's flight to New York was delayed.

 "Well it's unfortunate right now. I don't know all the parameters around the furlough, but if that's in fact the case, it affects my travel, and I'm not too happy about it," Wishart said.

U.S. Sens. Johnny Isakson and Saxby Chamblisss sent a letter on Friday to FAA officials urging them to reconsider the furlough days.

Copyright 2013 WTOC. All rights reserved.

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