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Study: Atlanta flights among worst on-time records | Business

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Study: Atlanta flights among worst on-time records

ATLANTA -- Four of the 10 "worst flights" in America either start or end in Atlanta, according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics.

The data compiled for a Wall Street Journal story listed four different Delta flights among its top 10 most delayed flights. The two worst flights on the list -- Delta 2743 and Delta 2843 -- run from Newark to Atlanta at 5 p.m. and 6:25 p.m. weekdays.

The 5 p.m. flight averaged one hour and 23 minutes late 60 percent of the time for the 12-month period ending May 31. The 6:25 p.m. flight ran an average of an hour and 19 minutes late nearly 50 percent of the time.

The average flight time from Newark to Atlanta is one hour and 40 minutes.

Experts say the big problem is the airspace in and around Washington. Much of the air traffic that flies through that airspace ends up being delayed due to the major congestion there. The study also said that Flight 2843 can trace some of its delays to the flight coming to Newark from Atlanta, which brings the plane used for Flight 2843 into Newark late.

Coming in at number 7 on the list is Delta 2355 from Atlanta to Los Angeles, which is supposed to depart at 8:45 p.m., but generally runs just over an hour late more than 44 percent of the time.

The number 9 slot on the top 10 list goes to Delta 1977 from Chicago to Atlanta. That flight is supposed to leave Chicago's O'Hare International Airport at 6:05 p.m., but runs nearly an hour and a half late more than 44 percent of the time.

The Department of Transportation has started requiring airlines to report flights together when they change flight numbers, but have departures within 30 minutes of each other. This rule would help Delta 2355's statistics, and Delta 1977 would actually fall out of the top 10 list under the rule.

But another Delta Atlanta departure would end up in the top 10, a 5:45 p.m. flight going to Newark.