SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) — The airline responsible for all flights to Sioux Gateway Airport has announced plans to end operations, but that doesn’t mean you have to change your flight plans.
Sky West said a pilot shortage is prompting the company to end service not just to Sioux City, but to the 29 airports where it flies.
The airline operates connecting flights for United Airlines once daily to Chicago and Denver.
Sioux City’s deputy city manager said the federal government requires Sky West to continue operations in Sioux City until a replacement is found.
“The good thing is that we are under the essential air services program, and this type of program gives us the umbrella to have this safety net, so right now it really goes to the Ministry of Transport, they go through a process for taking offers and reviewing proposals. Communities can contribute. Until a selection is made and a new airline is here, sky west will continue to provide service,” said Mike Collett.
The former chairman of the Sioux City Gateway board said the process of finding a new carrier had been expedited and he explained how long that process had taken in the past.
“I think the current order is 30 days, which is greatly accelerated, so they will be accepting offers over the next 30 days and then they will award a contract to someone else. You know, it might take, in the past, our past experience in Sioux City has been, it took 4-6 months for that to happen,” shared Dave Bernstein.
The Department of Transportation will continue to accept offers and proposals from carriers and community feedback will be used for the final decision.