Air traffic controllers in Jamaica have gone on strike, effectively shutting down air transport services at the island’s mainly two airports as of 10 a.m. Thursday, May 12, 2022. According to the Jamaica Civil Aviation Authority (JCAA), travel to and from the Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston and the Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay is impacted.
Per the source, workers have been in a three-month-long disagreement with the Ministry of Finance over wage payments.
According to the Jamaican national paper The Gleaner, up to 28 flights to Montego Bay have already been canceled, with one American Airlines aircraft from New York’s John F. Kennedy Airport diverted to Miami and a flight from Charlotte, North Carolina turning back. In addition, an Air Canada flight on its way to the island was forced to return to Toronto.
Many aircraft, including those from Frontier out of Atlanta, Sun Wing out of Toronto, and JetBlue out of New York, were able to land before the workers walked out on Thursday morning.
According to the Gleaner, it is unknown when the air traffic controllers will return to work. As a result, Howard Greaves, JCAA’s director of air traffic control, halted all services, including departures, at both airports.