JOPLIN, Mo. — SkyWest Airlines has notified the U.S. Department of Transportation that the airline intends to terminate United Express service at the Joplin Regional Airport and twenty eight other United Express communities. This will also affect Cape Girardeau and Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri, as well as Salina, Hays, Dodge City and Liberal in Kansas. SkyWest Airlines officials say this decision is based on the lack of pilots needed to meet demand, so the company is reducing flights across its network.

The U.S. Department of Transportation has put a hold on SkyWest from terminating service in Joplin until a replacement airline is selected and begins operations. SkyWest is expected to maintain the current daily schedule to Denver and Chicago. A new airline is expected to be chosen this summer.