5G Rollout Limited Around Airports After Airlines Express Safety Concerns
Ten leading U.S. airline executives have announced that thousands of flights could be delayed due to 5G technology that the telecommunications industry has been trying to roll out for months. They wrote a letter to the Biden Administration asking them to further delay the launch.
“The ripple effects across both passenger and cargo operations, our workforce and the broader economy are simply incalculable,” the executives wrote. “To be blunt, the nation’s commerce will grind to a halt.”
5G will be the fastest network ever, allowing users to upload and download information at never-seen-before speeds. The network will also be more reliable. 5G will support the largest number of mobile internet users yet. To do this, it will rely on radio frequencies called C-Band, which are near to the frequencies airplane technology uses. The concern is that the frequencies will interfere with each other, stop working and cause danger to the airplanes, especially if the technology is aiding the pilots in a low-visibility landing.
“When deployed next to runways, the 5G signals could interfere with the key safety equipment that pilots rely on to take off and land in inclement weather,” United confirmed in a statement.
United added a warning that safety concerns could lead to limitations on plane operations at airports, including those at large international airports like Houston, Newark, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Chicago.
“The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and our nation’s airlines have not been able to fully resolve to navigate 5G around airports, despite it being safe and fully operational in more than 40 other countries,” Verizon contested in a statement Tuesday afternoon.
They announced that they would limit 5G service around some airports until an agreement could be made. The telecommunications, aviation and government are in talks for a solution.