Hey Congress, let’s upgrade our skies

This is a photo of an Alaska Airlines jet taxiing on a runway.

It’s September, kids are headed back to school and Congress is heading into session about to vote on an FAA bill to reform our nation’s air traffic system. You say, why does it matter to me? Here’s three reasons why Air Traffic Control (ATC) Reform will help today’s travelers and why Alaska Airlines is strongly urging flyers to visit www.ontimeflights.org to encourage support of the bill. (It’s easy and only takes a minute. There’s even a pre-written email which auto-populates your congressperson’s name and email once you put in your address.)

Three reasons why ATC Reform makes sense:

  1. Fewer Delays: Transferring the air traffic control function to an independent, not-for-profit organization provides long-term financial stability for the system so that it can move quicker to implement air traffic control infrastructure and technology upgrades that benefit passengers, shippers and the environment by reducing delays, saving time and money, and reducing emissions.
  2. Faster Flights: Today, air traffic controllers sequence planes for take-off using paper strips and track them in-flight with ground-based radar. This inefficient system requires planes to travel from point to point, often traveling out of their way rather than in a straight, direct route. These outdated technologies result in unnecessarily long flight times and indirect routes, which add time, fuel and ultimately more cost.
  3. Enhanced Safety: Safety is priority number one. The United States has the safest air traffic control system in the world and the implementation of available, state-of-the art technology will enhance safety while improving operational performance. For too long, the governance and infrastructure of the air traffic control system has been allowed to become outdated, hampered by faulty governance and political red tape.

To learn more, and send an email to your Member of Congress, go to www.ontimeflights.org