Friday, August 8, 2008

As if Flying American Airlines Wasnt Dangerious Enough Lately

While American Airlines are making emergency airlines all over this great country the bosses of AA and US Air are demanding that pilots cut back on the amount of fuel they put on planes.

Pilots are complaining that their airline bosses are forcing them to fly uncomfortably low on fuel. They say safety for passengers and crew could be compromised.

Spare fuel beyond the minimum required by the FAA is often added to airliners to allow for weather or airport delays. But with fuel prices now their biggest cost, airlines are aggressively enforcing new policies designed to reduce consumption.

NASA has a confidential reporting system, which lets airline crews report safety problems without fear their names will be disclosed. It has heard from pilots who had to tell air traffic control that they needed to immediately get their planes on the ground, because they were carrying less fuel.

American and US Airways blame the complaints on heated labor negotiations. Both are in contract talks with the complaining unions. The airlines call it a contract issue, not a safety issue.

Considering American Airlines had to make two emergency landings just the other day, it's not entirely out of the question that circumstance might require a little extra fuel.

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