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The Polar Vortex and Pilot Rest Rules

Tuesday, January 07, 2014 - 02:35 PM

(Patrick Smith/Getty)

If you've had to fly anywhere over the last couple of days, chances are your flight has been delayed or canceled. While the weather is one obvious factor, JetBlue says newly implemented FAA rules about pilot rest are part of the reason for its snarled flights.

Thousands of flights have been affected by the unusually cold and snowy weather in the central and northeastern parts of the United States.

On Monday, JetBlue took the step of cancelling flights out of New York and Boston area airports through Tuesday afternoon, citing the weather—and the need to comply with crew rest rules.

In this interview, aviation consultant Michael Boyd talks about why cold is such a danger. "Bitter cold does things, like it congeals the oil in the crank case, it has lubricating oil that doesn't lubricate anymore, rubber parts harden up and crack, that battery that worked so well two months ago on the ... start unit now is dead," he said. "Bitter cold is something Alaska is used to, but New York City isn't."

He also talks about when flying could get back to normal, as well as how airlines are implementing the FAA's new rules.

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