With several countries suspending flight operations to contain the coronavirus spread, the aviation sector is one of the worst-hit. Flightradar24, world's leading flight tracker's data reveals that the total number of flights operating per day has now gone below 100,000 and total commercial traffic is below 50,000 flights per day. Normal average at this point of the year is above 1,75,000 according to Flightradar24. As per the flight tracking data, almost 100 airlines across the globe have grounded their fleet as more countries joined the coronavirus lockdown. This has also created a unique parking problem for airlines, further adding to their costs. In the United States, Airlines service was teetering on the brink of collapse, with near-empty planes and coronavirus outbreaks that have left some air traffic control towers empty. As the demand for air travel dropped, commercial aircraft were parked at facilities that included remote desert airports among others. The situation is no different in many European countries and the Asian subcontinent including India.
Dozens of American Airlines planes are parked at the Pittsburgh International Airport, Friday, March 27, 2020, in Moon, Pa. The airport has become a parking destination for the airline during the COVID-19 shutdown. (Andrew Rush/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette via AP)
Delta Airlines aircraft are stored at Southern California Logistics Airport, Wednesday, March 25, 2020, in Victorville, Calif. As demand for air travel drops amid the coronavirus outbreak, commercial aircraft are being parked at facilities that include remote desert airports, including the Southern California Logistics Airport in Victorville about 90 miles northeast of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
An aircraft takes off as passenger and cargo aircraft are seen stored at Southern California Logistics Airport, Wednesday, March 25, 2020, in Victorville, Calif. As demand for air travel drops amid the coronavirus outbreak, commercial aircraft are being parked at facilities that include remote desert airports, including the Southern California Logistics Airport in Victorville about 90 miles northeast of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Aircraft of Aegean Airlines are parked at Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport in Athens, Thursday, March 26, 2020. The Greek airline carrier announced that they will suspend all international flights from March 26 until April 30, because of the coronavirus outbreak and the travel restrictions imposed by the Greek government, the EU and other states. (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis)
American Airlines employees wait for passengers to check in at Laguardia airport, Saturday, March 21, 2020, in New York, N.Y. The Federal Aviation Administration briefly suspended flights to New York City-area airports on Saturday after a trainee at a regional air-traffic control hub on Long Island tested positive for coronavirus. In an alert posted online, the FAA advised air traffic controllers to "stop all departures" to John F. Kennedy, LaGuardia, Newark and other airports in the region because of staffing issues at the Ronkonkoma facility, which the agency says primarily handles high-altitude, cross-country flights. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)
According to an Associated Press report, the International Air Transport Association estimated that passenger revenue worldwide could fall as much as $252 billion, or 44%, compared with last year because of the decline in travel. That is based on strict travel restrictions lasting up to three months, followed by a slow economic recovery.
With fading air travels, the Airlines were also forced to cut jobs. In India, airlines have started to announce pay cuts for its employees. Earlier in the week, Air Canada announced that they were laying off more than 5,000 flight attendants as they cut routes amid plunging demand.
The United Arab Emirates suspended passenger transits through Dubai, the world's busiest international airport, for two weeks to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. Suspending transit through Dubai, which connects Europe with Asia and Australia, affected travellers around the world. India has already suspended all flights until April 15 as the country announced a 21-day lockdown.
As per Microsoft's COVID-19 tracker bing.com/covid, the total number of coronavirus positive cases across the world stood at 597,252 at the time of writing this report. More than 27,000 people have lost their lives to the deadly novel coronavirus disease. In the United States alone the COVID-19 positive cases crossed 100,000. The United States is followed by Italy with 86,498 positive cases, China (mainland) 81,394 and Spain 65,719. India has so far 873 COVID-19 positive cases, 775 of them being active.
(Inputs from Flightradar, AP and PTI)