US airlines remain firmly opposed to AT&T and Verizon’s deployment of 5G networks in the C-Band spectrum. Reuters reports that major airlines and the Federal Aviation Authority continue to warn that the activation could lead to chaos in US air traffic.
US airlines view the deployment of AT&T and Verizon’s 5G networks as a threat to air travel. According to the airlines, the activation of the 5G networks in the C-band, which is scheduled for the 19th of January (Wednesday), could result in many large aircraft remaining grounded.
Most notably, American Airlines, United, Delta, Southwest Airlines and the Federal Aviation Authority are calling on US authorities and Pete Buttigieg (minister of transportation) to take action. Above all, the airlines want airport environments to be unaffected by the 5G networks about to be switched on. Should AT&T and Verizon proceed as planned, the airlines are willing to cancel incoming international flights.
The telecom operators have yet to respond to the airlines’ new concerns.
This is not the first time that AT&T, Verizon and the aviation industry are butting heads over 5G in the C-band. In early January, the FAA urged Verizon and AT&T to delay the deployment of 5G in the C-band, prompting the operators to halt their plans. Both telecom operators agreed to set up buffer zones around airports in which 5G in the C-Band would not be activated. Thereby, the operators answered concerns about the possible interference of 5G and avionics.
AT&T and Verizon promised to take multiple measures to limit possible interference for six months. The operators postponed their initial activation by two weeks, from December 2021 to the 19th of January.
Both operators have no concerns about the activation of 5G in the C-Band. AT&T and Verizon point out that air traffic is unaffected in the 40 countries activating 5G worldwide. The telecom operators argue that the American situation is comparable to France, noting that 5G in the C-Band isn’t causing problems for air traffic around Paris. American airlines, on the other hand, feel that the situations are incomparable.
US authorities have yet to respond to the airlines’ latest appeal. To be continued, no doubt.