Airlines’ performance improves

by Wally Northway

Published: June 9,2009

WASHINGTON — The nation’s largest airlines had a rate of on-time flights this past April that was higher than both the same month last year and the mark posted in March 2009, according to the Air Travel Consumer Report released by the U.S. Department of Transportation.

According to information filed with the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, the 19 carriers reporting on-time performance recorded an overall on-time arrival rate of 79.1 percent in April, better than both the 77.7 percent on-time rate of April 2008 and March 2009′s 78.4 percent.

In April, the carriers canceled 1.5 percent of their scheduled domestic flights, a lower rate than both the 1.7 percent cancellation rate of April 2008 and the 2.1 percent rate posted in March 2009.

In April, the carriers filing on-time performance data reported that .0152 percent of their scheduled flights had tarmac delays of three hours or more, down from .0158 percent in March. There were five flights with tarmac delays of four hours or more in April.

In April, the carriers filing on-time performance data reported that 7.40 percent of their flights were delayed by aviation system delays, compared to 7.29 percent in March; 6.19 percent by late-arriving aircraft, compared to 6.49 percent in March; 4.78 percent by factors within the airline’s control, such as maintenance or crew problems, compared to 4.84 percent in March; 0.69 percent by extreme weather, compared to 0.62 percent in March; and 0.03 percent for security reasons, compared to 0.04 percent in March.

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