American Airlines files to terminate services in Sioux City

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FILE – An American Airlines Boeing 737-823 lands at Miami International Airport, Monday, July 27, 2020, in Miami.American Airlines said Tuesday, Aug. 25 that it will furlough or lay off 19,000 employees in October as it struggles with a sharp downturn in travel because of the pandemic. Flight attendants will bear the heaviest cuts, with 8,100 losing their jobs. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee, File)

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) – American Airlines has file a request to stop services in Sioux City due to the impact COVID-19 has had in the aviation industry.

According to the Sioux Gateway Airport, American Airlines filed U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) with the to terminate unsubsidized services in Sioux City as well as Joplin, Missouri.

The filing asks for services to be terminated within 90 days. If no selection is made, then American Airlines would have to continue to serve as the DOT takes bids from all carriers to serve the two markets.

Sioux City is an Essential Air Service (EAS) market, meaning that service is provided uninterrupted while the DOT processes a new airline to take over. While the DOT works completes a new selection to take over, American Airlines will continue to provide air service to Sioux Gateway Airport, providing for no gaps in service.

The Airport Board of Trustees President David Bernstein said they were anticipating the filing, saying there was “significant dialogue with all involved.”

“We are very lucky that in these very difficult times for the airline industry we have the EAS protection available to our community, as air service is critical for both economic development and quality of life,” he said.

The EAS is a U.S. government program that dates back prior to the deregulation of the airline industry in 1978. It guarantees that small communities that were served by a commercial carrier prior to deregulation would continue to receive a minimal level of scheduled air service that would otherwise not be profitable.

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