Airlines facing crisis that could 'put some airlines out of business'
The aviation industry is facing a crucial need for trained workers and must come up with more than 2.1 million new employees in three vital job positions during the next 20 years if it wants to keep up with the tremendous growth expected in the industry worldwide, according to a report this week by The Boeing Co.
The Current Market Outlook report issued by Boeing projects massive demand for new pilots, technicians, and cabin crew during the forecast period ending in 2036. This could lead to a massive problem for major airlines if they can’t keep up with the pace of growth. The pilot shortage already is having an impact on the industry, which expects roughly 18,000 pilots at major carriers in the U.S. to retire in the next three years. One industry expert says the lack of planning ahead for the shortage could put some airlines out of business.
Many of the major airlines have already started a round of intensive hiring of pilots.
Delta Air Lines has hired the most new pilots so far this year with 474 hired through May, followed by Southwest Airlines having hired 366 in the first five months of 2017, American Airlines Group having hired 354 new pilots in that period this year and United Airlines hiring 254 in that time, according to FAPA.aero, a career and financial advisory service for professional pilots and aspirants that tracks hiring of pilots.
FAPA.aero says that 2,426 new pilots have been hired in the first five months of 2017 by the major carriers in the United States, putting them on pace for more than 5,800 new pilots this year. That would be the most new pilots hired since the group started tracking data in 1990.
Delta and Southwest both hired more than 5,100 new pilots in the past 17 years, according to the FAPA.aero data. JetBlue Airways Corp. hired the third-most pilots in that period with 4,145, followed by United at 3,634 and American at 3,320.