Passengers use self-service kiosks to check in at the LaGuardia Airport in New York, the United States, on Jan. 25, 2019. The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration on Friday halted flights bound for New York City's LaGuardia Airport, due to staff shortage caused by the historic government shutdown. (Xinhua/Wang Ying)
WASHINGTON, Jan. 25 (Xinhua) -- The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration on Friday halted flights bound for New York City's LaGuardia Airport, due to staff shortage caused by the historic government shutdown, now in its 35th day.
"We have experienced a light increase in sick leave at two facilities. We've mitigated the impact by augmenting staffing, rerouting traffic, and increasing spacing between aircraft when needed," the FAA said in a statement.
"The results have been minimal impacts to efficiency while maintaining consistent levels of safety in the national airspace system," the statement said.
The FAA pointed to staffing issues at Washington Air Route Traffic Control Center to have led to the decision. Other main airports in the region, including Washington Reagan National, Newark Liberty International and Philadelphia International are also seeing delays.
The White House said U.S. President Donald Trump had been briefed on the situation.
LaGuardia Airport, located in the northern part of New York City, is the 20th busiest airport in the United States. It is a major traffic hub in northeast United States.