Friday, February 09, 2007

Alaska Airlines pilots at the bargaining table

Alaska AirlinesAlaska Airlines pilots are at the bargaining table in Seattle with company officials, trying to reach a new agreement about pay and working conditions. Alaska Airlines employs more than 1400 pilots.

An article about the negotiations on the website of Alaska's CBS TV station, KTVA reports:
The pilots say Alaska Airlines needs to hire more of them to spread out the flights and give them some time to sleep.

"Don't push us. Staff us properly so that you are not putting people from the front side to the back side of the clock and back again. That's not safe; that's not smart," said Alaska Airlines pilot, Captain John Sluys.
For their part, airline officials point out that the amount of rest time each pilot receives is more than adequate under federal regulations.
"Our pilots are required to work fewer hours per each shift, and get even more rest between shifts than they are required to under FAA regulations," said Amanda Tobin Bielawski of Alaska Airlines.
Airline officials say they hope to have an agreement -- and a strike avoided -- by May.