Airline CEOs have had many things to worry about in the era of COVID-19, but the current concern is 5G, which they say could have ‘catastrophic’ consequences for their industry.
CEOs of major airlines and cargo transportation companies penned a letter detailing their concerns ahead of AT&T and Verizon’s rollout of their new 5G network. The service is set to begin on Wednesday, and the industry leaders believe that it could “potentially strand tens of thousands of Americans overseas” by rendering a large number of aircrafts unuseable.
“We are writing with urgency to request that 5G be implemented everywhere in the country except within the approximate 2 miles of airport runways at affected airports as defined by the FAA on January 19, 2022. This will allow 5G to be deployed while avoiding harmful impacts on the aviation industry, traveling public, supply chain, vaccine distribution, our workforce and broader economy,” they wrote.
“Unless our major hubs are cleared to fly, the vast majority of the traveling and shipping public will essentially be grounded,” wrote the CEOs of Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Atlas Air, Delta Air Lines, Hawaiian Airlines, JetBlue Airways, Southwest Airlines, United Airlines, FedEx, and UPS.
“This means that on a day like yesterday, more than 1,100 flights and 100,000 passengers would be subjected to cancellations, diversions or delays,” they warned.
The airlines are even considering whether or not to ground some international flights that are scheduled to a land in the US on Wednesday, indicating that this is a serious issue and not a fringe concern among the conspiracy theorist cohort.
“With the proposed restrictions at selected airports, the transportation industry is preparing for some service disruption. We are optimistic that we can work across industries and with government to finalize solutions that safely mitigate as many schedule impacts as possible,” noted Boeing on Monday.
However, the disruptions may ruin more than a business trip, or a vacation flight to Hawaii. Even cargo ships will see the adverse effects of the 5G network, which could delay “air passengers, shippers, supply chain and delivery of needed medical supplies.”
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