Antiquated FAA in a Tailspin

New system won't be ready until 2025
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 2, 2007 10:24 AM CDT

(Newser) – With canceled flights, hours on the tarmac, overbooking and a disturbing increase in near  collisions, one might be better off traveling by pony than plane, reports Business Week, and the authority responsible seems least able to fix it. As FAA chief Marion Blakey steps down, she leaves an antiquated agency mired in a struggle to get its Next Generation Air Travel System airborne.

Although the FAA last week awarded a $1 billion contract for NextGen’s first phase, it doesn’t expect to have the system—which would utilize satellite technology, relieve congestion and revamp outdated flight paths—to be functional until 2025. When you're "flying at 30,000 feet you're counting on the system—a system that is at breaking point," warned Blakey.