APA News Digest

Feb. 3, 2024

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In This Edition ...

Telephone Polling – We Need Your Input

In accordance with Section 4.07.A of the APA Policy Manual, APA will conduct telephone polling this month to continue to actively solicit your feedback. We will continue to poll the membership through a mix of methods (e.g., telephone polling and web surveys) in order to produce accurate results that are statically representative of all our members.

The poll will be conducted by the University of New Hampshire, who will interview a number of randomly selected pilots across the system. Calls will occur from Monday, Feb. 5, through Friday, Feb. 16.

Your input is important! If you receive a call, please take the time to answer and respond to the questions. Responses will be anonymous.

Please look for the following information if a call comes in:

  • All calls will come from 603-397-0660.
  • Caller ID on landlines will indicate “UNH Surv Ctr.”
  • Caller ID on cell phones will indicate “NH Call.”
  • Call times will be between 0900 and 2100 (time zone appropriate).
  • If the call is missed, UNH will attempt to call you back if additional sampling is needed.

As more and more telephone carriers add “spam blocking” technology, some pilots may (dependent on carrier) see a message that says “spam likely” when the call comes through. This message may be generated based on the volume of calls the polling company makes. To avoid receiving this message, you may want to consider adding the number to your contacts.

If you don’t receive a call from UNH in these next two weeks, you may be called in a future poll. We will continue to solicit feedback on a regular basis so that we can accurately gauge our members’ concerns and target our resources toward the continuous improvement of APA.

Under Pressure, Boeing Withdraws MAX 7 Exemption Request

This week, The Seattle Times published an article (“Under pressure, Boeing drops request for a 737 MAX 7 safety exemption”) that detailed how Boeing withdrew its request for an exemption for the 737 MAX 7 certification requirement to repair the engine anti-ice risk of catastrophic engine failure.

APA spokesman CA Dennis Tajer told the newspaper that Boeing’s decision to withdraw is “good news for MAX airplanes not yet certified, but we’ve got miles to go before we rest. There are hundreds of airplanes flying with this same exposure, dependent on pilot memory to avoid a failure. We need the engine anti-ice issue resolved on the hundreds of MAX airplanes that are flying today.”

Sen. Maria Cantwell of Washington – who chairs the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation – echoed CA Tajer’s reaction. “This is good news,” she said in a statement. “I hope this means [Boeing] can quickly develop a compliant design across other MAX planes.”

NOTE: An FAA Airworthiness Directive (highlighted in last week’s News Digest) details the risk and limitation placed on all 737 MAX aircraft.

Also this week, The New York Times published an article (“Boeing faces tricky balance between safety and financial performance”) that covered the recent call by many to review the executive leadership at Boeing. Those expressing increasing frustration with Boeing and its repeated safety problems include airline executives, federal regulators, and APA.

“Lately, Boeing appoints CEOs that seem more focused on stock price and dividends than on flight safety and production quality,” CA Tajer told The New York Times.

Former CEO Crandall: “What the Captain Just Said is Correct”

Fox Business recently asked former American Airlines CEO Bob Crandall to react to APA spokesman CA Dennis Tajer’s harsh critique of Boeing: “What the captain just said is correct, and the pilots and the flight attendants and the mechanics are all part of that culture of safety. And I think that that is what Dave Calhoun and the rest of the Boeing people have to do, is they have to rebuild that understanding of safety.” Click here to watch the interview.

Laser Attacks Hit Record High – Increase by 41%

The FAA reported a record number of laser strikes on airplanes in 2023. There were 13,304 incidents last year, compared to 9,457 in 2022. The previous record was 9,723 in 2021.

NBC News covered the FAA’s report and turned to APA spokesman CA Dennis Tajer, who once landed a plane during a laser strike, for his perspective:

  • “When you point a laser at a cockpit to blind the pilots, you’re not attacking two pilots. You’re attacking every person on that airplane. It’s a big deal.”
  • “It comes quick. It’s a little bit of a shock. You can’t believe that you’re being laser attacked, and then you get back to doing a job of flying the airplane. Moments after that, it sinks in, and you frankly want to go return the favor.”
  • “You don’t have to be a pilot to understand how if a pilot is blinded during landing that bad things could happen.”

Concourse Conversations at CLT on Feb. 8

APA’s National Communications Network will be at CLT from 1100 to 1700 on Feb. 8 for another round of Concourse Conversations. If you will be at CLT that day, look for them in the food court on the B Concourse side nearest to the new KCM access point. These volunteers will be eager to hear from members in good standing so they can relay your feedback to APA leadership.

Next Contract Training Set for March 6-7

This is an updated message from the APA Contract Compliance Committee.

The Contract Compliance Committee wants to do everything we can to ensure that all APA members are well acquainted with the 2023 Collective Bargaining Agreement.

Join us on March 7 in PHL for a full day of training on the new CBA. This training will be conducted in hybrid fashion, with members welcome to participate in person or virtually via Zoom. It will be preceded by a four-hour IMAX session on March 6 with no Zoom component.

Please take a few moments before the training to familiarize yourself with the Electronic Document Index. You must be logged in to AlliedPilots.org for the links to be accessible. This Index connects you to a vast array of APA documents that we will reference. It is equally useful in the daily operation as a line pilot, so we recommend you retain the Index for future reference. During the training, it may be helpful to have two screens; one to run Zoom and one to reference these documents.

Help us help you! The Contract Compliance Committee’s goal is for you – the membership – to be informed, educated, and knowledgeable. Every single pilot should strive to be a contract expert or, at the very least, strive for continued learning and engagement. Knowledge is power, and it will assist you in employing and being a watchdog of your negotiated work rules.

Training Offered for CIRP Volunteers

This is a new message from the APA Critical Incident Response Program Subcommittee.

Are you a good listener? Would you like to assist other pilots? The Critical Incident Response Program (CIRP) wants you!

CIRP volunteers talk to pilots after they experience a critical incident. If you are interested in becoming a CIRP volunteer, please consider attending a training session scheduled for Feb. 20-22 at APA headquarters in Fort Worth. We use the International Critical Incident Stress Foundation (ICISF) Critical Incident Stress Management (CISM) model. This session is for volunteers who have not been trained in this model or just want a refresher on previous training.

Training will be from 0800 to 1630 daily. If you do not live near DFW, plan on traveling prior to Feb. 20 and returning home late on Feb. 22. Training materials (electronic book), certificate (upon completion), A12 travel to/from, hotel, and most meals will be provided.

If you are interested in volunteering, or if you have questions, contact FO Jim Woodke at jwoodke@alliedpilots.org or 847-331-8409.

Soliciting Data on Cabin Crew Complements

This is a new message from the APA Safety Committee.

During the pandemic, management reduced the number of flight attendants on some aircraft types. If you have experienced any issues regarding the number of available flight attendants, please let us know via safety-chair@alliedpilots.org.

Hotel Preferences for TDY Pilots

This is an updated message from the APA Hotel Committee.

TDY bidding will open early next week. All pilots who are awarded or assigned a TDY will receive a CCI message on the 7th of the month to notify them of the TDY for the following month. This CCI message will include a link to the “Pilot Hotel Preference and Waiver Page,” where pilots can preference their hotel option. Pilots can select a “Airport/Short,” “Downtown/Long,” or the “TDY Hotel Waiver” option, which pays the TDY pilot $2,000 in lieu of a company-provided hotel room. This selection needs to be completed by 1200 Central on the 13th of the month prior to the TDY.

AA is not able to wait until PBS awards are published to make hotel assignments, because allocations need to be accomplished prior to that point. If a pilot is awarded a TDY in a co-terminal location (i.e., JFK, LGA, EWR) the Flight Admin team will attempt to reach out to the pilot after the 18th to determine the most suitable option.

APA’s PBS 3XP is a great tool to determine what kind of line or reserve schedule your seniority can hold in a particular bid status and can help you determine which hotel option is the best choice for you.

If you bid for a TDY or are junior in a bid status with TDYs being offered, watch for a TDY assignment notification message in CCI on the 7th so you can properly preference for a hotel.

For more information, see the QRH – Quick Reference Hotels document, which should answer 99 percent of all hotel and transportation questions while providing helpful solutions. Suggestion: Download this QRH document to your AA iPad for easy access in the future.

Join Us at the Swamp Cabbage Fly-In

This is a new message from the APA Family Awareness Committee.

The Swamp Cabbage Fly-In will be held from 0900 to 1600 Eastern on Feb. 24 at X14, the airport in LaBelle, Fla., in conjunction with the annual LaBelle Swamp Cabbage Festival. The fly-in, which was organized by APA pilots, will feature static displays of warbird and vintage aircraft, food/beverages, and guests from Miami Air Traffic Control. This is a great event for the whole family! If you have questions, send them to swampcabbageflyin@gmail.com.

Pigs of the Week

APA commends American Airlines’ hardworking aircraft maintenance technicians for their outstanding work. We believe they are the best in the business. When repetitive problems do arise, they’re often due to managerial decisions that fail to properly prioritize tasks and to management’s decision to outsource a significant portion of the airline’s maintenance to offshore, third-party repair stations.

  • In the last week, A321 aircraft 546 has been written up nine times for alternate brakes and has been out of service five times. It was most recently signed off on Feb. 2 and is restricted to Class 1 maintenance stations.
  • In mid-October, B737 aircraft 3AM returned to service from storage. Since then, it has been written up 30 times for the aft cabin temperature being uncontrollable and has been out of service 15 times. At the time of this writing, it was on MEL and restricted to Class 1 maintenance stations.

APA Welcomes New Pilots

This is a new message from the APA Membership Committee.

Click the image for a closer look.

The APA Membership Committee welcomed the following pilots during a casual dinner on Jan. 30: Matthias Anderson, Shaun Asaro, Timothy Bean, Chad Brezina, Marius Caloianu, Robert Cawby, Byung Choi, Domonick Colletti, John Davis, Reginald Davis Jr., John Earle, Ethan Ehlers, Jacqulyn Greentree, James Hadrava III, Yann Irlinger, Darwin Justice Jr., Michael Kaveny, Thomas Kershul, Robert Krause, Shelby LaFerney, Nathaniel Lightfoot, Frank Madero Lindsey, Jose Maldonado Machuca, Robert Marshall, Andy Melo, Shlomo Menashi, Ohan Merguerian, Nelson Mogollon Castro, Stephen Morrison, Marcelo Novak, Brandon O’Neil, David Page, Benjamin Pietrowski, Brian Relin, Oscar Rodriguez Bolano, Brandon Smith, David Sparks, Matthew Thompson, William Tiefenbrun, Steven Vlasic, Derrick Watson, Bryan Wetzel, and Stefan Winkfield.

APA Welcomes Captains’ Leadership Class

This is a new message from the APA Membership Committee.

Click the image for a closer look.

On Jan. 31, the APA Membership Committee hosted a casual dinner for the following pilots who were in Fort Worth for American Airlines’ Professionalism, Leadership, and Mentoring class: Stephen Anim, Jarod Biehn, Claus-Martin Birkigt, Carlos Bonano Perez, Gary Bruyns, Sean Clark, Michael Crass, Brian Culver, Bobby Dahlquist, Mark Davies, Renard Davis, Constantinos Felios, Aaron Gajewski, Andrew Gawrilow, Karl Goerke, Nathaniel Haddox, Kevin Heartwell, Pierce Homsey, Cory Jeffers, Erwin Jocson, John Kapost, Frank Kletecka, Glenn Kohan, Stephanie Layman, Francis Lessett, Billy Mercader, Timothy Miller, Nathan Mooney, Howard Mooney, Kevan Nanton, Isai Ortiz Rosario, Brian Paddock, Scott Parrish, Janet Patton, Norman Reyes Celis, Neil St. Hill, Rhett Thompson, and Garin Wenninghoff.

Domicile Events

Click the image for a closer look.

The LGA Family Awareness Committee hosted a “Winter Warmer” event on Jan. 26 at Long Island’s Cradle of Aviation Museum and Education Center. See more photos on our Facebook page.

Visit AlliedPilots.org/Calendar to RSVP for any of these upcoming domicile events:

  • CLT: Concourse Conversations on Feb. 8
  • DFW: IMAX Training on Feb. 15; Domicile Meeting on Feb. 27
  • LAX: Domicile Meeting at SoFi Stadium on Feb. 7; SAN Family Awareness Lunch on Feb. 13
  • ORD: Chicago Blackhawks game on March 2
  • PHL: Domicile Meeting on March 6; IMAX Training on March 6; Contact Compliance Training on March 7

CLT Domicile Election

APA Secretary-Treasurer FO Pat Clark sent the following message to all CLT members on Wednesday.

The following results of the CLT Election Round have been certified by the American Arbitration Association:

CLT Domicile Chair
FO Russ Blackwell
FO Erik Knauff
CA Dan Scola


Congratulations to CA Scola, who will serve as CLT Domicile Chair through Oct. 31.

Thank you to FO Blackwell and FO Knauff for your willingness to serve.

Week in Review

Here are several recent messages you may have missed.

Are You Willing to Serve?

Each of these national committees or subcommittees has the indicated number of vacancies:

  • Aeromedical Committee (2)
    • Disabled Pilot Awareness Subcommittee (3)
    • Human Intervention Motivation Study Subcommittee (1)
    • Pilot Occupational Health Subcommittee (2)
    • Project Wingman Subcommittee (3)
  • Captain’s Authority Committee (2)
  • Communications Committee (0)
    • National Communications Network (7)
  • Flight Time/Duty Time Committee (1)
  • Grey Eagles Liaison Committee (1)
  • Jumpseat/Non-Rev Committee (1)
  • Scheduling Committee (5)
  • Training Committee (4)
    • Checkmate (1 on 777)

If you would like to serve on one or more of these committees, visit the Member Engagement Portal.

Professional Standards FAQs

Do committee volunteers receive any kind of training?
New committee volunteers receive an extensive two-day training course that includes more than 16 hours of classroom instruction. The training includes modules such as Conflict Resolution, Mediation, Mentoring, Pilot Personality, Generational Issues Affecting Cockpit Performance, Resources, and Communication Skills. Committee members also receive instruction on the Professional Standards process, the APA Policy Manual, and the importance of confidentiality. These concepts are reinforced through multiple role-play scenarios.

To read all of the FAQs, click here.

Professional Standards’ 24/7 hotline: 817-402-2181

If You’re 50, Join The Grey Eagles

Are you a pilot for American Airlines, at least age 50, active or retired? Please join The Grey Eagles for food, fun, and fellowship. We offer cruises, conventions, monthly luncheons, retirement dinners, professional mentoring, and assistance to surviving spouses – all for a one-time lifetime fee.

Pilot Job Fairs and Future Pilot Seminars

Future & Active Pilot Advisors’ next Pilot Job Fair and Future Pilot Seminar are scheduled for Feb. 9 at DAL followed by March 15 at SAN. Click here for more information.

Industry News

For more about what’s happening in the industry, be sure to visit the Industry News page on AlliedPilots.org.

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