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Auto Pilot: Glitch Leaves Thousands Of American Airlines Flights Without Pilots For Christmas Season

DALLAS (CBS Local) – A computer glitch with American Airlines' pilot scheduling system could strand thousands of travelers over the upcoming holiday travel rush.

According to the Allied Pilots Association union, a glitch in the system that bids for pilots' time off is to blame for the possible pilot shortage.

"As a result, thousands of flights currently do not have pilots assigned to fly them during the upcoming critical holiday period" the union said in a release.

The union estimates about 15,000 flights between Dec. 17 and Dec. 31 are currently not assigned pilots, Bloomberg News reports.

American Airlines spokesman Matt Miller told Bloomberg that AA is offering pilots 150 percent of their normal hourly wages in order to fill the flights.

"We are working through this to make sure we take care of our pilots and get our customers to where they need to go over the holidays," he told Bloomberg.

Miller would not confirm any numbers.

Several replies to tweets from the airline's official social media account are telling passengers not to worry.

"We're working diligently to address the issue and expect to avoid cancellations this holiday season," read one reply.

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