The omicron variant continued to sow chaos in air transport around the world on Monday (27.12.2021) with thousands of cancelled flights, while continuing to set records in the number of infections, the latest in countries such as Denmark, Greece and Iceland.
Major U.S. airlines again cancelled more than 1,000 flights on Monday and are facing the fourth consecutive day of cancellations, according to Flight Aware, a U.S. company that provides real-time flight information.
At 9.15 a.m. local time on the US East Coast, 810 flights to or from the United States had been suspended, but five hours later the figure had risen to 1,074, accounting for more than a third of the total number of worldwide cancellations (2,713).
Of the major U.S. airlines, the most flights canceled today were United, American Airlines and Delta (with 94, 84 and 79, respectively); the most affected airport in the world turned out to be Seattle, where 84 planes did not take off and 91 did not land.
Many travelers were waiting for a new flight at Miami International Airport after Monday’s cancellations.
But while this highly contagious variant identified in South Africa in November is “a cause for concern,” it “should not be a cause for panic,” U.S. President Joe Biden said Monday.
Over the Christmas weekend, some 8,300 international and domestic airline connections were cancelled, and tens of thousands of flights were delayed.
Europe has become the global epicenter of the epidemic upsurge, with 2,901,073 new cases in the last seven days (55% of the world total), and the highest number of deaths, 24,287 in one week (53% of the total), followed by the United States and Canada (10,269 deaths, 22%).
Denmark and Iceland announced records of daily cases, as did Greece, which has already reimposed the mask in outdoor areas and will close bars and restaurants at midnight, also limiting the number of tables. Norway, for its part, has indicated that the new variant of the coronavirus is now in the majority in the capital, Oslo.
The United States is also approaching another record number of infections, with nearly 215,000 new cases on Sunday, an 83% increase in 14 days.