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SWA Extended Overwater Operations  
User currently offlinePlanenutzTB From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 256 posts, RR: 1
Posted (8 years 2 months 10 hours ago) and read 3304 times:

I was flying Southwest Airlines today and read an article in their June Spirit Magazine by CEO Gary Kelly. In the article he reviews ways SWA is seeking new and innovative ways to keep costs down. He mentions that SWA has recently started "extended overwater operations, allowing for more direct, more economical, and less congested routing". Can someone give more detail on how this helps SWA on their routes? What routes are impacted by extended overwater operations? Is this why I have noticed on my most recent SWA flights, the FA's are now doing a life vest demo?

BTW, the June Spirit Magazine celebrates the 35 years of SWA. It has many interesting articles about the history of SWA, its people, and of course a great interview with Herb Kelleher. Well worth picking up a copy of if you fly on SWA this month.


I am extraordinarily patient, provided I get my own way in the end.
14 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineAtrude777 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 5692 posts, RR: 52
Reply 1, posted (8 years 2 months 10 hours ago) and read 3292 times:

Quoting PlanenutzTB (Thread starter):
What routes are impacted by extended overwater operations? Is this why I have noticed on my most recent SWA flights, the FA's are now doing a life vest demo?

Absolutely, BWI-ISP, ISP-MCO,FLL, TPA any florida route from the northeast, HOU-MCO, TPA-HOU, those areas can now go overwater, farther, before WN had to stay extremely close to the land.



Good things come to those who wait, better things come to those who go AFTER it!
User currently offlineJetdeltamsy From United States of America, joined Nov 2000, 2987 posts, RR: 8
Reply 2, posted (8 years 2 months 10 hours ago) and read 3276 times:

Quoting PlanenutzTB (Thread starter):
Can someone give more detail on how this helps SWA on their routes? What routes are impacted by extended overwater operations?

I believe it's to improve route efficiencies between the northeast and southwest markets to florida.



Tired of airline bankruptcies....EA/PA/TW and finally DL.
User currently offlinePlanenutzTB From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 256 posts, RR: 1
Reply 3, posted (8 years 2 months 10 hours ago) and read 3269 times:

Quoting Atrude777 (Reply 1):
Absolutely, BWI-ISP, ISP-MCO,FLL, TPA any florida route from the northeast, HOU-MCO, TPA-HOU, those areas can now go overwater, farther, before WN had to stay extremely close to the land.

Thanks for reply. These routes obviously make sense for overwater routing. Why is SWA only recently starting this? I would think they would always have done this.



I am extraordinarily patient, provided I get my own way in the end.
User currently offlineAtrude777 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 5692 posts, RR: 52
Reply 4, posted (8 years 2 months 10 hours ago) and read 3259 times:

Quoting PlanenutzTB (Reply 3):

Thanks for reply. These routes obviously make sense for overwater routing. Why is SWA only recently starting this? I would think they would always have done this.

Before they didnt have the 737-700, and winglets, with added fuel cost they are now looking for every single way to save fuel and having extended range helps save on fuel now. plus most of the flights were over land anyhow. now with the rise of the over water flights plsu rumors of going to HNL and such and mexico they want to go ahead and get the game started.

Alex



Good things come to those who wait, better things come to those who go AFTER it!
User currently offlineOPNLguy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (8 years 2 months 10 hours ago) and read 3259 times:

Quoting PlanenutzTB (Thread starter):
Can someone give more detail on how this helps SWA on their routes? What routes are impacted by extended overwater operations? Is this why I have noticed on my most recent SWA flights, the FA's are now doing a life vest demo?

Prior to the lifevests being installed, SWA flights had to stay within 50nm of the nearest shoreline. With the advent of lifevests, that's been extended out to 162nm, and out to 100nm north of Wilmington, NC (ILM).

The big advantages are for flights to/from Florida. From the west, flights no longer have to hug the Gulf Coast via Crestview, FL (CEW) and Tallahassee, FL (SZW) and can instead take a shorter route via Leeville, LA, (LEV) and then out over the Gulf before crossing the Florida coast. From the airports in the NE, aircraft likewise no longer have to hug the Atlantic coast via Charleston, SC (CHS) and Savannah, GA (SAV) and can instead take shorter routes via ILM overwater to Florida destinations.

All this saves fuel, and it also increases operational flexibility when thunderstorms in Florida force major re-routes. Previously, if thunderstorms cut off the normal routes and ATC wanted to issue a re-route than ran you 70nm offshore, that re-route couldn't be accepted due to the 50nm limit, and the flight just sat there until the weather abated such that something within 50nm could be flown, or the normal routes opened up. Now, we have the flexibility to fly whatever re-routes are necessary (within 162nm, of course), and that means flights aren't delayed as badly.


User currently offlineSteeler83 From United States of America, joined Feb 2006, 9182 posts, RR: 18
Reply 6, posted (8 years 2 months 9 hours ago) and read 3226 times:

Is PHL-PVD affected, or is that already an "overwater" operation?


Do not bring stranger girt into your room. The stranger girt is dangerous, it will hurt your life.
User currently offlineAirframeAS From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 14150 posts, RR: 24
Reply 7, posted (8 years 2 months 9 hours ago) and read 3209 times:

Wait a sec..... life vests? Doesn't that add more weight to the aircraft? What's wrong with the seat cushions that are already floatable? I know this is about WN but AS has their seat cushions that can float on the 737's


A Safe Flight Begins With Quality Maintenance On The Ground.
User currently offlineOPNLguy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (8 years 2 months 9 hours ago) and read 3192 times:

Quoting Steeler83 (Reply 6):
Is PHL-PVD affected, or is that already an "overwater" operation?

That one's not, but when the aircraft gets to PVD, it could easily be scheduled to do a Florida Leg where it comes in handy...

Quoting AirframeAS (Reply 7):
Wait a sec..... life vests? Doesn't that add more weight to the aircraft? What's wrong with the seat cushions that are already floatable? I know this is about WN but AS has their seat cushions that can float on the 737's

Yes, they do weigh more. FAA regs in essence say that seat cushions are only good out to 50nm. If you want to go out to 162nm, you'll need vests. If you want to go beyond 162nm, you'll need lifeRAFTS as well...


User currently offlineGift4tbone From United States of America, joined Dec 2004, 612 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (8 years 2 months 9 hours ago) and read 3180 times:

Quoting Steeler83 (Reply 6):
Is PHL-PVD affected, or is that already an "overwater" operation?

I don't understand this? Even with the most direct-routing, the Airplane stays within 50 NM of long island, ny, so I don't believe this routing is affected. But PVD-FL, and maybe even PHL-FL routes are affected.

-Tony@PVD



Top 3 airports: PVD 26.0%(115 flights), PHL 15.6%(69 flights), PHX 12.0%(53 flights)
User currently offlineAirframeAS From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 14150 posts, RR: 24
Reply 10, posted (8 years 2 months 9 hours ago) and read 3131 times:

OPNLguy: Makes sense about the regs. Thanks. I learned something new!


A Safe Flight Begins With Quality Maintenance On The Ground.
User currently offlineMir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 21528 posts, RR: 55
Reply 11, posted (8 years 2 months 9 hours ago) and read 3117 times:

Quoting OPNLguy (Reply 5):
Prior to the lifevests being installed, SWA flights had to stay within 50nm of the nearest shoreline. With the advent of lifevests, that's been extended out to 162nm, and out to 100nm north of Wilmington, NC (ILM).

Any idea what the rationale is behind those numbers (why 50 as opposed to 60, etc.)? I assume 162 vs. 100 is due to colder waters up north, but any ideas beyond that?

-Mir



7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
User currently offlineOPNLguy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (8 years 2 months 8 hours ago) and read 3062 times:

Quoting Mir (Reply 11):
Any idea what the rationale is behind those numbers (why 50 as opposed to 60, etc.)? I assume 162 vs. 100 is due to colder waters up north, but any ideas beyond that?

As far as why 50 and not 60 or 61, I have no idea. The FAA has their reasons, I suppose...


User currently offlinePlanenutzTB From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 256 posts, RR: 1
Reply 13, posted (8 years 2 months 6 hours ago) and read 2959 times:

Thanks again for replies. This explaines why the life vests got inserted into the SWA safety demo and the floating seat cushions were delated a few months ago.


I am extraordinarily patient, provided I get my own way in the end.
User currently offlineLat41 From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 468 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (8 years 1 month 4 weeks 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 2746 times:

I check the routings on Flightaware often and I beleive I have yet to see the overwater route taken advantage of on the MCO and TPA to PVD flights. This does not meen it never does however. I do notice the NK A 319s using that path on the FLA flights but not their MDs. The short PHL PVD is almost always flown inland skirting the NY area congestion that I can determine.

Cheers


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