Dubai-based Emirates airline suspends flights to DFW airport due to 5G uncertainty
Dubai-based airline Emirates is suspending flights to DFW International Airport and eight other airports amid the growing fight against the expansion of 5G telecom services in the United States.
Emirates, which flies daily between DFW and Dubai in the United Arab Emirates, suspended all flights from Wednesday to DFW, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Miami, Newark, Orlando, San Francisco and Seattle, while maintaining flights to New York, Los Angeles and Washington, D.C.
Emirates cited “operational concerns associated with the planned deployment of 5G mobile network services in the United States at certain airports”, the airline said in a travel advisory on Tuesday.
“Affected customers do not need to call us immediately for a rebooking,” Emirates said. “Customers can simply keep their Emirates ticket and, when flights resume, contact their travel agent or reservations office to plan new journeys.”
Emirates flies daily between DFW and Dubai International Airport on a Boeing 777-200LR with a capacity of 292 passengers.
The suspended flights came as AT&T and Verizon agreed to delay the rollout of expanded 5G mobile phone networks in the “C spectrum” on Tuesday. Airlines and the Federal Aviation Administration argue that C-spectrum frequencies are too close to the spectra used by sensitive airline equipment such as altimeters, which measure an aircraft’s altitude.
The commercial group of the main American air carriers, Airlines 4 America, argues that expanding 5G as currently proposed could cost airline passengers $1.59 billion a year and delay or cancel up to 345,000 flights.
The FAA wants telcos and regulators to accept the same kinds of 5G limitations used in other countries, including low-power towers around airports, antennas that point toward the ground, and a buffer zone around airports. .
The FAA decided last week to suspend automated plane landings at 100 airports nationwide, including DFW International and Dallas Love Field. the The FAA on Sunday cleared some Boeings, Airbuses and McDonnell-Douglas to make low visibility landings with the new 5G expansion, although more than half of aircraft, including large jets like the Boeing 777 and 787, are still not covered.
Other foreign carriers are also hesitant in the face of the inability of US regulators and industries to find a compromise. Japanese carriers All Nippon Airways and Japan Airlines canceled 13 flights to the United States scheduled for Wednesday, Japanese news source Nikkei Asia reported Wednesday. All of these flights connect Tokyo to New York or Los Angeles.
Japan Airlines offers daily flights from DFW International Airport to one of Tokyo’s two major airports, Tokyo Haneda and Tokyo Narita. So far, Japan Airlines has not canceled any flights to DFW airport.
All Nippon and Japan Airlines operate Boeing 777 and 787 flights to the United States, which have not yet been approved by the FAA for low visibility landings at airports with 5G C spectrum coverage.