LOS ANGELES - According to experts, you’ve got three things going on here.
There are airline staffing shortages.
Flight crews and pilots getting sick with COVID and flu.
And finally, there are lots of people who want to travel.
Kareem Roowala and his wife Anita were at the LAX to go to New York for New Year’s. When we met them, they were more mellow about the flight cancellation crisis than others around here; a crisis created by a confluence of COVID cases among pilots and flight crews, and a job shortage created during the pandemic that hasn’t been fixed yet.
For the Roowalas it’s all about just "going with the flow."
Others passengers, however, told us things like, "This is a disaster. There are a lot of families. People are inconvenienced. I’ve been literally here at the airport since 9pm. I’m just ready to get home."
Another said, "We were able to come here and find exactly this spot to lay our heads and use our backpacks as headrests."
When might things get better?
Retired United Airlines Captain Ross Aimer says, "I’m afraid it’s not going to be looking very good."
He’s retired from United but still flies in the friendly skies and right now. To him, things don’t look so friendly.
Aimer says, "When the system is down to the minimum number of crews that are required to do these flights one little hiccup throws everything."
Aimer adds, "Those airplanes, don’t forget, are a petri dish for any kind of germ."
It’s no surprise to him that COVID-19 has been upending the system.
Traveler Nicole Oleski told FOX11, "I hope my flight is not cancelled."
Even though their Denver flight has not been canceled yet Oleski, her daughters and other travelers worried as they waited for their flights hoping there’s no last minute hitch.
Aimer says he appreciates that feeling.
"This is tough This is really tough when you are stuck in some city you don’t want to be in," Aimer said.
He also says the cancellation crisis could last another week or so.
Tune in to FOX 11 Los Angeles for the latest Southern California news.