(TheLibertyRevolution.com)- Last Monday, Spirit Airlines said that due to its massive flight disruptions in recent weeks, that affected tens of thousands of travelers and caused chaos at airports throughout the US, the airline lost about $50 million in revenue.
These massive flight disruptions, which they attribute to staffing shortages, inclement weather and technical problems, occurred between July 30 and August 9 . And during that time Spirit canceled more than 2,800 flights. As a result the discount carrier said it is making “tactical schedule reductions” for the rest of the third quarter in an effort to soften the blow from staffing shortfalls.
Spirit CEO Ted Christie offered an apology to everyone impacted throughout the disruptions, adding that the airline believes that the interruption was “a singular event driven by an unprecedented confluence of factors.” Christie does not believe that what happened reflects any systemic issues at the airline.
The Department of Transportation said that it reminded Spirit Airlines of its legal obligations – including providing “prompt refunds” to passengers who choose not accept alternative travel after Spirit “cancels or significantly changes a flight.”
The Transportation Department is also monitoring the airline and reviewing complaints in order to ensure the rights of its customers were not violated, adding that it will act “if the airline fails to comply with applicable law.”
Adding to Spirit’s troubles is the number of customers who are canceling more bookings as COVID cases begin to rise.
Frontier Airlines and Southwest Airlines, blaming a slowdown in bookings due to the surge of the Delta variant of COVID, have also cut their forecasts this month, saying a negative revenue impact of $80 to $100 million is expected during the third quarter.
Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA), chair of the Senate Commerce Committee has added Spirit Airlines to other US carriers she has been questioning about flight disruptions and staffing shortages. Cantwell wants answers as to why these staffing shortages are happening despite the fact that Congress set aside $54 billion in payroll aid to airlines since March 2020.
Thus far Spirit has not responded to Senator Cantwell’s requests for answers.