United cancels at least 150 flights at O'Hare, most due to crew shortage

CHICAGO - United Airlines canceled at least 150 flights at O'Hare International Airport on Saturday, mostly because of a shortage of pilots.

Some had called in sick, but many of the missing pilots had already worked all their allotted weekly hours trying to make up for flights canceled Thursday and Friday because of bad weather in the East, United spokesman Chris Brathwaite said.

United pilots have refused to work overtime since their contract expired in April, Brathwaite said. The company and the pilots' union are negotiating a contract with a federal mediator and hope to have a new agreement in place by early September.

A pilots' union spokesman did not immediately return a call for comment Saturday. In the past, the union has denied having any organized effort to refuse overtime work.

United has about 960 flights per day out of O'Hare. Saturday's cancellations totaled about half of the airline's cancellations systemwide.


On the Net:

United: http://www.united.com


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