AT&T, Verizon reject Buttigieg's plea to delay 5G launch amid warnings of aviation chaos

Unless these issues are resolved, air travelers “will face widespread and unacceptable disruptions as planes are diverted to other cities or flights are canceled, affecting all US air traffic,” Buttigieg and Dickson wrote in their letter to the was reported by POLITICO last week.

The wireless operator’s rejection is the latest move in weeks of an escalating stalemate between the air and telecommunications sectors – a year after wireless companies spent more than $ 80 billion to license the 5G-friendly C-band radio waves a federal communications agency to buy commission auction. The battle over the Trump-era initiative has drawn multiple agencies and the White House with airlines urge an emergency stay even after the FCC insisted that cellular companies can safely use the airwaves.

Cellular operators originally intended to start the service on December 5th, but postponed it until this week following warnings from the FAA. You have already agreed six months of action is intended to limit the potential impact of the signals on aircraft and airports.

The FAA said Sunday it is reviewing the airline’s letter but added, “US aviation safety standards will guide our next action.”

New offer from the mobile communications industry: Verizon and AT&T told DOT on Sunday that they will take even more extensive containment measures by July 5. However, they completely rejected the idea of ​​postponing the launch of the new 5G service.

“Approving your proposal would not only be an unprecedented and unjustified circumvention of the due process and the carefully crafted controls and balances in the structure of our democracy, but an irresponsible abandonment of the operational controls necessary to build world-class and globally competitive communication networks.” are just as important for the economic vitality, public safety and national interests of our country as the aviation industry, ”wrote the CEOs of the two companies.

They said they wanted to continue to work with the federal government to avoid an “escalating” complaint from the aviation industry “elsewhere”.

The two airlines propose to set up “extensive restricted areas around the runways of certain airports” in order to cut off the power supply of the 5G service in sensitive areas, following the example of the measures taken in France. France’s approach is “one of the most conservative in the world,” it says.

FCC chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel, a Democrat, said late last year that she had confidence in the wireless operator’s proposal to address all concerns and had been active in discussions with other federal officials. Meanwhile, FCC Republican Commissioner Brendan Carr attacked the DOT’s concerns a letter on Saturday, said aviation industry fears are not rooted in good data.

What’s next: The cellular industry suggests that the aviation industry may just need to upgrade some of its own aircraft. In the six months, the aviation industry should have “ample opportunity to conduct further studies and correct altimeters that may not meet current standards, as originally recommended by the FCC in February 2020,” argued the airlines.

Oriana Pawlyk contributed to this report.

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