Southwest Airlines says a fix is coming as Senators skewer carrier for December meltdown

Feb. 14, 2023
The Dallas-based airline’s operations chief Andrew Watterson told a U.S. Senate committee that an upgrade to crew scheduling software will be live Friday, Kyle Arnold reports for The Dallas Morning News.

WASHINGTON - Southwest Airlines chief operating officer Andrew Watterson says an upgrade to the company’s crew scheduling software will be ready to go Friday after two rounds of testing, which should help fix some of the problems that led to a cascade of cancellations over the winter holidays, Kyle Arnold reports for The Dallas Morning NewsContinue reading original article.

The Military & Aerospace Electronics take:

14 February 2022 - The U.S. Senate invited Southwest's Watterson to testify before the body's Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee related to the airline cancelling 16,700 flights in December. Those cancelations were a result of the company's crew scheduling system falling short during a winter storm event causing weather-based delays and cancellations.

“With regards to our flight scheduling software, there’s a specific issue we had during the disruption and a fix will be put (Friday) into production,” Watterson said. “But the overall flight scheduling system, we were looking to upgrade and replace that, so we’ve conducted a request for information from software vendors to evaluate those, and we’ll be going to a request for proposal here after we have the findings from our assessment.”

North Carolina Republican Sen. Ted Budd asked Watterson directly if the cancellations were a result of technology or management.

Watterson said the company has “technology needs that need to be addressed.”

Related: Experts warned Southwest Airlines, FAA about outdated software for years

Related: Why are airlines canceling so many flights?

Related: United blames FAA’s control system for snarling U.S. aviation

Jamie Whitney, Associate Editor
Military + Aerospace Electronics

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