The Federal Aviation Administration released a map indicating that 11 air traffic control facilities operated by the body across the US have had personnel test positive for COVID-19, contributing to airport closures and flight delays while cleaning efforts commence.
Chicago’s Midway Airport was the first to effectively close after an air traffic controller assigned to the airport’s air traffic control tower tested positive for the virus.
Other major airports affected by the spread of the novel coronavirus include John F. Kennedy International Airport and LaGuardia Airport in New York and Las Vegas’ McCarran International Airport. Most incidents outside Las Vegas have been restricted to the east of the Mississippi River with New York being the most affected region.
Facilities with COVID-19-positive technicians have had to shut down for cleanings, closing down vital airspace and restricting access to major airports for extended periods. Aircraft continuing to operate to some airports without backup facilities during the closures have had to communicate directly with each other for separation.