Contract issues

RJFlyer

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Here are a couple of questions.

There have been numerous posts recently on another board regarding naps and reserve callout.

First, that a particular nap is 'unsafe' because it is only scheduled for 4-1/2 hours' rest between block in and block out, that a particular crew was only able to get about 1 hour of sleep (after deciding to remain at the airport after arriving an hour late), and the capt felt that he should have delayed the flight until the crew was rested. My take on this is that it's a NAP = CDO = 'continuous duty overnight.' But this means that you, as a pilot assigned this trip, are responsible to be rested before duty-in, and have the required rest period after duty-out. Granted, our contract requires a 5-hour break, but would that extra half-hour really have made a difference? Why, if we are on duty, are we entitled to 'rest' as defined in the contract? I don't think we are. As in so many other things in life, we need to develop a sense of responsibility, not entitlement.

Second, if on reserve, we are required to report within 2 hours if called. So many make it a point to not show up one minute early. What is wrong with saying "I will be there within 2 hours, earlier if I can make it," instead of "screw you, the contract says 2 hours, so I'll be there in 2 hours, period?" I understand that we can't let crew scheduling take advantage of us, but we also need to remember that we are in a service industry. That doesn't mean that the company is here to service us, but rather that we are here to service the customer.

I am interested to hear any reasonable (read, keep your emotions in check) opinions on this matter. Thanks for your time and input.
 

~~~^~~~

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RJ Flyer:

Several Delta pilots got sued, individually, during their contract negotiations for stuff they wrote on public boards. But anyway, here goes...
Granted, our contract requires a 5-hour break, but would that extra half-hour really have made a difference? Why, if we are on duty, are we entitled to 'rest' as defined in the contract? I don't think we are. As in so many other things in life, we need to develop a sense of responsibility, not entitlement.
No, I doubt the 1/2 hour would have made any difference.

However, do you have the authority to re-negotiate our contract? We have to have a set of standard rules that are followed in order to avoid confusion, provide for safety and the quality of life that we have negotiated with our employer.

For example, I was awaken by crew scheduling one morning with the message "go back to sleep, we need you to fly a nap tonight." Of course I could not get back to sleep, so I was up from 7:30 that morning to duty in at 10:30pm. I tried to take a nap, but again was awaken with a message advising the flight was delayed, duty in at 11:35pm. We finally got out of the gate with a deferred DPU, autopilot and auto pressurization controller at 1:45 in the morning for the AEX / GTR nap.

Due to the deferral it was my four leg nap with no autopilot. Coming back to ATL at 05:30 the next day I have to admit I was not safe and should not have been flying. However, I was junior, very gung ho and felt just like you do now.
So many make it a point to not show up one minute early. What is wrong with saying "I will be there within 2 hours, earlier if I can make it," instead of "screw you, the contract says 2 hours, so I'll be there in 2 hours, period?"
Don't confuse crew room bragging with the truth. Most of my junior Captain buddies talk tough, but like all of us they get to the airport as soon as they can. What was happening is that pilots were getting threatened with termination when they took an 1:15 to respond to a reserve call up. In Atlanta traffic an hour and thirty drive is common - plus another 15 to 20 waiting on the crew bus. ALPA negotiated the two hour rule with management to protect your job and mine.

Rarely does crew scheduling actually have a crew member cancel at the last minute. Most of the time they know about their staffing needs days in advance - yet they wait until the last minute because they don't bother to look in the computer and see they have only one pilot for a flight until the other pilot is asking "Where's the Captain?" (thirty minutes after scheduled departure time) IMHO - last minute reserve call outs would not be a problem if Crew Scheduling bothered to do their job and call reserves days in advance when they first were notified that the lineholder would not be available for the trip.

Crew Scheduling also puts a lot of pressure on pilots to show early and if one guy says "sure this whole two hour rule is bull" then what do you think scheduling thinks when they talk to the next guy who lives in Marietta and needs two hours + to get to the airport in traffic?

Some pilots think the fellow who lives in Marietta should move to the Atrium, live in their uniforms and eat at Pascals - but that is just not the way some of us want to live. Some of us can not afford to sell houses and move when our wives make all the money to support us on our outstanding regional jet FO wages.

At any rate - the company agreed to the contract. That contract is the deal that you and I work under. I do not have the authority to change the contract and the airline certainly expects that I will live up to my end of the bargain. In exchange we have to expect the company will honor the contract.

Just ask crew scheduling to change your reserve days, or drop a trip. Then you will see how flexible the company is when it comes to violating the contract, even when it costs them nothing.

It is a two way street - the line up the middle is there to keep folks from crashing head on in to one another.
That doesn't mean that the company is here to service us, but rather that we are here to service the customer.
Agreed, but have you tried to get a LAV DUMP in ATL, or potable water? For two days I've heard the "truck is broken - can't do a lav dump." So I'm operating a 20 million dollar, 500 MPH $hithouse - with a seat next to the lav door where I have seen passengers cover their noses with blankets? The ATL ramp has a great 45% on time departure average - which they blame on Delta scheduling. (The fact that our passengers need to connect to Delta flights does not seem to occur to them)

Look around the ramp and you might see me doing my own bug scrub, throwing a few bags, or pushing a wheelchair. The customer service problems in ATL rarely involve a flight crew person. There is plenty of room for improvement and the company does not seem inclined to hire the help to get it done... If they don't care - why do we? Because we are pilots.

The problem is not the flight crews showing up at 2:00 instead of 1:15. The ATL ramp earned their below 50% performance with their own unique way of doing things.
 
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MetroSheriff

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Good post....

Fins,

Well put. I couldn't have said it better.
 

bssthound

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Allow me to add my own A-MEN!!
 

Saabslime

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enough
And I thought we were the only ones with these kind of problems!!
 

Tim47SIP

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As another poster put it, ATL ramps problems are demograhic. You could use DFW to back up that statement. The other night we were two hours late out of the gate. The aircraft was there and at the gate when we dutied in. We called 30 min's prior and 30 min after dep the pax showed up. Because of fuel weight, we could only cary 56 pax and 100 bags. I told ops that we would refigure the weight once we new the kid and bag count. You guessed it, they sent 66 people. After we redid the weight, we could only carry 63. it took over 30 mins to get a gate agent to come down and deplane the 3 people, of wich no one wanted to get off. If that wasn't bad enough, we had no bags and we called on board an hour prior. Plenty of rampers at C33 but we were at C37. When I personally went to get them, they informed me that it wasnt their zone. After a little conversation with a ramp supervisor, their zone was extended. One hour later, we finally got loaded and were off for a PFN nap. The delay reason I gave ops was "late do to stupidity". OK, I'm done bitching.
 

FL000

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Right on, Prof! It's give and take. I had several points to make on this, but I refrained because I don't think we should be airing our dirty laundry and contract talk on a public board. Our LEC Chairman has even discouraged it on the ASA/ALPA board! Let's be smart.

FL000
 

RJFlyer

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"Several Delta pilots got sued, individually, during their contract negotiations for stuff they wrote on public boards"

What did they get sued for?

"I don't think we should be airing our dirty laundry and contract talk on a public board"

I wasn't trying to get into contract renegotiation or air dirty laundry, just had a few questions about issues that seem rather commonsense to me. These are the same issues I see people crying about from every airline, so I was specifically trying to be non-specific. I know that the 4-1/2 hour thing is a violation. The point is that the same people would be whining about it even if it weren't. If you're on nap reserve and they call you in the morning while you're sleeping, it's simple - don't answer the phone.

"if one guy says "sure this whole two hour rule is bull" then what do you think scheduling thinks when they talk to the next guy who lives in Marietta and needs two hours + to get to the airport in traffic? "

You're right - again, I'm not saying that it's bull - it's not. But there is no reason to be adversarial about absolutely everything.

"It is a two way street - the line up the middle is there to keep folks from crashing head on in to one another."

Right again, but nobody is willing to be the first to go up that line. It gets to be a Catch-22 - "well if they don't stop treating me this way, then I won't stop either." With both sides saying this at all times, there will never be any improvement.
 

MetroSheriff

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Screw Scheduling

I hardly think it is dirty laundry to accuse crew schedulers of being inefficient, inconsiderate, irritating, or incompetant.

They are crew schedulers, no one ever accused them of being smart. I suppose you could, you might even be able to get them indicted. But you could never get a conviction...:D

By no means is this unique to ASA. Comair, ACA, Skywest, Eagle, TSA, PSA, Shhhataaakwaaaa, Allegheny, Lakes, Air Whiskey, you name it, if they have a scheduling department...THEY SUCK.

With a few exceptions, I think that most of the crew scedulers are probably flunkouts from PFT programs for collection agencies. I am so sure of this I think I will start a new thread...
 
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FL000

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I should clarify that the comments that I was about to post would have been more ASA specific. So I was self-censoring. I don't think anything posted so far is inappropriate, but I felt it could easily head in that direction (i.e. buttered squash).
 

MetroSheriff

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FL000,


Speaking of hot, buttered squash...just kidding...
 

TurboS7

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Smell the roses

I am always going to do whatever puts myself and my crew and the upline crew under less stress. I try to run on-time so that I am not late and ruin the next crews minimum layover. As for the callout I always get to ops ASAP and get all the required paperwork done. That allows for a cup of coffee, some talk time and a leisurely crew brief, enjoy the job. I see crewmembers that act like there time is worth $50,000 per hour, I wonder "why do you even do this." I fly because I love it, the chat with the dispatcher, crew sked, and the F/A along the way makes it even more worthwhile. If I don't make the time for the above I loose half the joy of my job.
 
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