Sponsor Message:
Civil Aviation Forum
My Starred Topics | Profile | New Topic | Forum Index | Help | Search 
Virgin America Flight 404 - LAX-JFK 16 Hours  
User currently offlineN62NA From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 4576 posts, RR: 7
Posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 20981 times:

This is just outrageous:

http://www.myfoxhouston.com/dpps/new...16-hour-flight-fc-20100316_6596283

63 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineUA777222 From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 3348 posts, RR: 11
Reply 1, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 20929 times:

It's unfortunate but VA acted properly. JFK was a joke the last few days. It would have been stupid for them to attempt to land.

The weather monitoring equipment on the field was damaged it was so windy there. I think the number was 1 in 5 arrivals made it in so most area airports (EWR, BOS, ect) were loaded with wide-body diversions who also had to put up or bus their passengers.

Given that they were only operating off of estimated conditions (no accurate real-time conditions), everyone was playing it by ear and personal judgement. Sounds like the crew waited until the last minute to throw in the towel.



"It wasn't raining when Noah built the ark."
User currently offlinerichierich From United States of America, joined Nov 2000, 4289 posts, RR: 6
Reply 2, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 20850 times:

Oh gosh - here we go again!

Let me start by saying that I do agree that 16 hours is a long time to be expected to stay in an aircraft, and Virgin America had a few opportunities to make this right and did not. But this story is overhyped and one-sided, in my opinion, because it has to be said that the weather in the Northeast US was wild and ridiculous. I'm surprised there were not more horror stories like this.

Kudos to JetBlue for "saving" the passengers but I really think this article did not consider the fact that the weather was furious, dangerous and out of control. I'm guessing the crew were waiting for a window in which to operate their flight - the problem was that this window didn't come until it was too late. When I see grainy cellphone pictures of the flight crew standing at the microphone, I just know the passengers are blowing this out of proportion.

Unless somebody was on this flight, it is tough to say what Virgin America did right or wrong. All I can say for sure is that this storm will go down in the history books in the Tri-State area - I have seen damage that I haven't seen after so-called hurricanes blast through the area!

[Edited 2010-03-16 07:59:39]


None shall pass!!!!
User currently offlineiloveboeing From United States of America, joined Oct 2005, 798 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 20843 times:

Quoting UA777222 (Reply 1):
It's unfortunate but VA acted properly

But couldn't they at least have let them off the plane, into the SWF passenger terminal, during the wait? I mean, I don't think I agree with the government charging airlines $27,000 / pax or something like that for situations like this, but what happened here was simply obscene!

IMO, they should have at least let the passengers into the terminal, to stretch their legs and get something to eat, while they waited.

I don't know the SWF area, but heck, if there was a Pizza Hut or something nearby, the airline could have ordered pizza for everyone, you know, to try to make the situation a little easier. Little things like that help, you know? The way the F/As yelled at the customers was totally unacceptable.


User currently offlineUA777222 From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 3348 posts, RR: 11
Reply 4, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 20778 times:

Quoting iloveboeing (Reply 3):
But couldn't they at least have let them off the plane, into the SWF passenger terminal, during the wait? I mean, I don't think I agree with the government charging airlines $27,000 / pax or something like that for situations like this, but what happened here was simply obscene!

IMO, they should have at least let the passengers into the terminal, to stretch their legs and get something to eat, while they waited.

I don't know the SWF area, but heck, if there was a Pizza Hut or something nearby, the airline could have ordered pizza for everyone, you know, to try to make the situation a little easier. Little things like that help, you know? The way the F/As yelled at the customers was totally unacceptable.

When VA gets on the ground at SWF, they're not thinking "let's shut down, deplane, and get some pizza." They're going to shut down one engine, sit on the ramp, and wait to be released to JFK. They were trying not to RON.


Quoting richierich (Reply 2):
But this story is overhyped and one-sided, in my opinion, because it has to be said that the weather in the Northeast US was wild and ridiculous. I'm surprised there were not more horror stories like this.

Agreed.



"It wasn't raining when Noah built the ark."
User currently offlinehiflyer From United States of America, joined Nov 2004, 2177 posts, RR: 3
Reply 5, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 20661 times:

You get what you pay for...fly a small 'low cost' airline and if you divert you are up for grabs. It is quite obvious that Virgin's infrastructure was not up to handling mundane items as a diversion instead relying on 'let's cross our fingers and wish real hard the weather improves'. In the wake of everything that has happened regarding 'on the aircraft' delays this is especially embarrassing. They should have bingo'd to IAD where a lot of other JFK traffic went and where Virgin America has staff.

User currently offlineN62NA From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 4576 posts, RR: 7
Reply 6, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 20576 times:

Quoting hiflyer (Reply 5):
You get what you pay for...fly a small 'low cost' airline and if you divert you are up for grabs.

Yeah... but this happens on the "full service" carriers as well, so in this case, I don't think your argument holds much water.

Quoting UA777222 (Reply 4):
When VA gets on the ground at SWF, they're not thinking "let's shut down, deplane, and get some pizza." They're going to shut down one engine, sit on the ramp, and wait to be released to JFK. They were trying not to RON.

Yup. Not considering the pax who have been sitting on the plane for hours and hours already. Allow the pax to get off the plane, warn them to stay near the gate and that if they don't and the plane leaves, they are on their own.

Quoting iloveboeing (Reply 3):
IMO, they should have at least let the passengers into the terminal, to stretch their legs and get something to eat, while they waited.

Agree 100%.


User currently offlineUA777222 From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 3348 posts, RR: 11
Reply 7, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 20348 times:

Quoting N62NA (Reply 6):
Allow the pax to get off the plane, warn them to stay near the gate and that if they don't and the plane leaves, they are on their own.

They can't leave the passengers unless the passenger elects to not reboard. They're liable for the passengers when they're the reason the passengers are there in the first place.

Trust me, you could say that to every passenger and when company give you a 20 min window to get off the ground, you're going to miss it.

There are 100 excuses for what happened, its a reality. I don't know why passengers assume that when they're asking for the lowest prices they expect 100% catered service. I relate it to getting stuck in a cab during traffic. Sure no 7 hours, but you can't tell the cab driver "listen, I'm going to hope out and grab a bite, when the traffic gets moving again, give me a holler and I'll be right back. Oh, and don't run the meter while we wait. Thanks."

VDRs product is also the top of the market, so it could have been much worse.



"It wasn't raining when Noah built the ark."
User currently offlinehiflyer From United States of America, joined Nov 2004, 2177 posts, RR: 3
Reply 8, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 20155 times:

Quoting N62NA (Reply 6):
Yeah... but this happens on the "full service" carriers as well,

In this past storm? I have not seen any news accounts of other pax trapped 7 hrs onboard...and all the majors diverted far more than one A320 to far more airports than Stewart. Now some did not get home for 24 or even longer but they were off the aircraft and some were even hotel'ed and given meals despite being a 'weather' incident.

This was the first real test of how JFK is going to run in weather with the big runway down...and how bad it is really gonna be. B6 and DL have already requested to be released from the 4 hr rule and Continental says they will just cancel over at EWR. Next big weather and lay bets more flts are xncld earlier.

The major cities around the NYC area with Customs at their airport are gonna get busy with multiple intl widebody diverts...smaller cities whose staff is used to 2-3 a day are going to get surprised just like they did this past weekend. Carriers that fail to properly preplan this scenario with their flt ops, dispatchers, line station managers, and cockpit crews are going to continue to make the news as Virgin America did.


User currently offlineUAORD2000 From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 266 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 19964 times:

Quoting UA777222 (Reply 7):
. I relate it to getting stuck in a cab during traffic. Sure no 7 hours, but you can't tell the cab driver "listen, I'm going to hope out and grab a bite, when the traffic gets moving again, give me a holler and I'll be right back. Oh, and don't run the meter while we wait. Thanks."

This is so perfect!!


User currently offlineCrosswind From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2000, 2601 posts, RR: 58
Reply 10, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 19964 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

I never understand why US carriers seem unable to cope with routine operational disruption, and I'm not singling out Virgin America here. I worked for 4 years as a Senior Operations Controller at a large UK charter/low cost carrier, so am very well aware of the airline's perspective of the "operational side" of disruption to scheduled flying and some of the stories are incredible!

Ok,
The basic premise doesn't sound too disressing; they diverted due to weather to an airport they did not serve, 90 miles from the original destination.

On any form of diversion, we would arrange some sort of handling - even if passengers were initially expected to remain onboard. That at least provides a local representative, and an airbridge and/or stairs. Infact for all our destinations, we at least had the name and contact details for the nominated handler at all 3 of our "standard" diversion alternates for each destination. These were stored in our Operations Control system so we could quickly generate an email/SITA/fax... usually before the aircraft even landed to make some sort of basic provision.

Normally if it was a weather diversion, and conditions were not expected to show a fairly quick improvement and the distance to the final destionation was reasonable (as in this case) we would bus passengers to their final destination. And if needed bus outgoing passengers to wherever the aircraft was, if we were going to attempt to operate the next schedule without moving the aircraft.

We had corporate contracts with bus companies to do this, and this would either be done by ourselves in the Ops Control Centre, or locally by our Airport Services staff at the intended destination, or in the last instance by the handling agent where the aircraft was.

I don't remember a situation where we were forced to keep passengers onboard for an excessive period of time, sometimes people were kept inside an airport terminal for long periods - but I don't recall people being unable to disembark from aircraft.

We also had a policy of looking after passengers, regardless of cause of disruption, so in line with our welfare policy we would provide food, drinks, hotel accomodation and alternative transport to the final destination, regardless of whether the delay/diversion was due to technical problems, operational delays, weather, industrial action etc. And this was years before any EU passenger rights legislation.

In the Ops Control Centre, we also had dedicated staff to manage the "human" side of operational disruption. Past experience had shown that the Dispatch/Ops Controllers looked after the aircraft, Crewing looked after the crew, and that without a dedicated team of people to look after passenger welfare; they became a secondary concern - as the Ops team were generally fully occupied dealing with knock on effects affecting the aircraft, crew etc

I'm sceptical that JetBlue "rescued" the passengers, I think the more likely scenario that there must have been some sort of official contract to handle the flight. For liability and insurance purposes, I doubt any company would let their staff and equipment handle an aircraft without at least an IATA standard handling agreement place. It doesn't take a great strech of the imagination to think about what would happen if JetBlue ground equipment damaged the aircraft, a passenger tripped on the JetBlue stairs or a piece of baggage was damaged by JetBlue during unloading.

Anyway, interesting nonetheless...

I have great memories of my time in Operations, the pressure and on-the-spot decisionmaking, but I'm not sure I'd choose to go back to it again!

Regards
CROSSWIND


User currently offlinepanamair From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 4951 posts, RR: 25
Reply 11, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 19682 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Quoting N62NA (Reply 6):
Yeah... but this happens on the "full service" carriers as well,

The larger legacy carriers have gotten "smarter" about diversions. For example, I have noticed that recent weather diversions for DL fights from Europe into JFK this past winter have been to other DL hubs instead of to the nearest airport. For example, some would divert to CVG, while others diverted to DTW, or ATL or MSP, even though this meant flying further away from NY. This way, not only do these hubs have FIS facilities to let pax disembark, but many pax that were connecting from JFK anyway could pick up connecting flights from those other interior hubs; in addition, the airline had the ground support necessary to handle the diverted/stranded pax

Smaller carriers simply don't have the "luxury" of diverting to a hub where they have enough ground resources to handle IROPS.

[Edited 2010-03-16 10:05:29]

User currently offlineDAL763ER From United States of America, joined Oct 2008, 553 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 19396 times:

Then why not go the CO way? - cancel the darn flight if you know you have very slim chances of reaching your destination on time. Send the pax to a hotel (no one says you have to send them to Hilton or Sheraton and the likes...anything cheap ought to do as long as it has a bed and a shower) and everyone will be happy. This is outrageous. Plus, canceling the flight and paying for 150 pax's hotel room is much cheaper than $27k/person - in fact, even if you send them to, say, a $300/night hotel, it is still much cheaper...


Where aviation is not the side show, it's the main show!!!
User currently offlineUA777222 From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 3348 posts, RR: 11
Reply 13, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 19274 times:

Quoting DAL763ER (Reply 12):
Then why not go the CO way? - cancel the darn flight if you know you have very slim chances of reaching your destination on time. Send the pax to a hotel (no one says you have to send them to Hilton or Sheraton and the likes...anything cheap ought to do as long as it has a bed and a shower) and everyone will be happy. This is outrageous. Plus, canceling the flight and paying for 150 pax's hotel room is much cheaper than $27k/person - in fact, even if you send them to, say, a $300/night hotel, it is still much cheaper...

Pilots are the last person to have a say in the matter. It is entire up to Ops in what they feel is best for the flight, the aircraft rotation, and the crew on board. Most airlines have agreements with hotels for these sorts of situations so cost wouldn't be the largest factor.

Again, it wasn't like it was snowed out or there was a tornado in the area. Winds were out of control and there was no accurate form of gauging conditions on the field. Winds were so strong that it blew out the monitors so they were using the national weather service to provide estimates. They were putting everyone into a hold and when someone felt brave enough, they'd go through the approach and either land or go missed. The tower would then hit up the most recent missed approach and ask them what the conditions were. Wind-shear was a big factor as well. I believe an AA or UA 767 reported a loss of 150 @ 200.

JFK ops weren't helping airlines out much either. An AeroMexico flight went missed and told tower that they were going to keep climbing until they were clear of the wind-shear and tower got mad at them for breaking their assigned altitude to which a DL holding got on the air and told them something to the effect of:

"Tower, he's fighting a wind-shear, he's going to do whatever he needs to do"

Simply put, it was a mess. These things happen. There are refunds and travel vouchers for a reason.



"It wasn't raining when Noah built the ark."
User currently offlineORDflier From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 174 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 19274 times:

I have said it before and I will say it again... Come April more flights will be cancelled... and folks will be stranded all over the US due to situations like this... Airlines will follow the Continental model and let customers attempt to find seats elsewhere. (That is assuming they follow through on their threat of mass cancellations)


ORDflier
User currently offlineDeltaAVL From United States of America, joined Mar 2007, 1893 posts, RR: 6
Reply 15, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 19121 times:

David Martin's blog about his first-hand account on Kontain:

http://www.kontain.com/david/entries...sportation-and-an-apology-for-you/


And the YouTube video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vxqKwuRMQUs



Interesting read. The captain seemed a little unsure of himself and the situation, which could have led to some of the unease.



"We break, We bend, With hand in hand, When hope is gone, Just hang on." -Guster
User currently offlinessublyme From United States of America, joined Dec 2008, 517 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 18817 times:

I believe this story is misleading. I just heard this same thing on CNBC and the tv reporter said they weren't on the phone for 16hrs, it took 16hrs to get to their destination. That would include the bus ride + daylight savings. Supposedly Virgin didn't hold anyone hostage, passengers were given opportunity to deplane and as some already said, VA doesn't have facilities at that airport so had to request from Jetblue. It was just a bad set of events colliding at the same time. Not much in terms of incompetence on the part of Virgin.

[Edited 2010-03-16 12:27:58]

User currently offlinesankaps From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 2255 posts, RR: 2
Reply 17, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 18282 times:

Regardless of the length of delay and the circumstances surrounding it, looks like a a number of people involved in this incident need to learn the basics of customer service, as acknowledged by the CEO of VA, David Cush. And there is at least one (probably soon to be former) VA FA who wishes he never left Delta for more reasons than one!

Strange to hear about the announcement by the JetBlue employees who finally "rescued" the VA passengers... the announcement they made sounds almost unbelievable.... a very Branson-like marketing move, so ironic!


User currently offlinesankaps From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 2255 posts, RR: 2
Reply 18, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 18241 times:

Quoting UA777222 (Reply 1):
It's unfortunate but VA acted properly. JFK was a joke the last few days. It would have been stupid for them to attempt to land.

You're right from a FlightOps perspective, and absolutely no one is suggesting they should have attempted to land at JFK in those conditions.

But VA certainly does not seem to have "acted properly" from a customer service or disruption management perspective once the aircraft arrived and was on the ground for an extended period of time at Stewart.

I base my impression on the first hand account at http://www.kontain.com/david/entries...sportation-and-an-apology-for-you/
.


User currently offlinerichierich From United States of America, joined Nov 2000, 4289 posts, RR: 6
Reply 19, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 18201 times:

Quoting Crosswind (Reply 10):
I'm sceptical that JetBlue "rescued" the passengers, I think the more likely scenario that there must have been some sort of official contract to handle the flight. For liability and insurance purposes, I doubt any company would let their staff and equipment handle an aircraft without at least an IATA standard handling agreement place. It doesn't take a great strech of the imagination to think about what would happen if JetBlue ground equipment damaged the aircraft, a passenger tripped on the JetBlue stairs or a piece of baggage was damaged by JetBlue during unloading.

I was curious about this so I made a couple of phone calls.
Apparently there is absolutely NO formal agreement between JetBlue and Virgin America regarding ground handling at SWF or anywhere else for that matter. What may have happened was an informal agreement, maybe even verbal, made during the time Virgin America was desperate to get the pax off of this plane. I believe the lack of "people on the ground" and a hope/belief that there would be a window to continue the flight to JFK was a major reason the aircraft didn't unload the passengers earlier.

JetBlue will likely be reimbursed for their expenses and crew time (at whatever rate was hastily agreed upon; I'm sure B6 called the shots there) and JetBlue comes out smelling like roses as the 'savior'. Look, I think it is great that JetBlue did the right thing here in helping out a fellow neighbor (even one that you may not like) and don't you know they got some free press out of it too. Not to mention the passengers on that plane will likely be flying JetBlue instead of Virgin America next time!!

I still think the whole thing was blown out of proportion, from the usage of the terms 'flightmare' and 'savior' in the local press, to the rationing of Pringles. The reality is that sitting on the ground for as long as Virgin America did was too long - we all can agree on that perhaps - and while I am not letting them off the hook, it is somewhat understandable given the nature of this particular storm. Safety first, and putting 150 passengers into a terminal with no ground crew present and no idea how long before help arrives is probably just as irresponsible. Maybe picking SWF to divert to was not the best idea but who knows where or when that decision was made. It was an unfortunate incident and hopefully one that Virgin America will learn from. Much like JetBlue prior to 2007, they have had nothing but good press concerning their service since their launch - they'll have to put this PR mess behind them now.



None shall pass!!!!
User currently offlinePITrules From United States of America, joined Jun 2000, 3236 posts, RR: 6
Reply 20, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 18074 times:

Quoting Crosswind (Reply 10):

I'm sceptical that JetBlue "rescued" the passengers, I think the more likely scenario that there must have been some sort of official contract to handle the flight.
Quoting sankaps (Reply 18):

Strange to hear about the announcement by the JetBlue employees who finally "rescued" the VA passengers... the announcement they made sounds almost unbelievable.... a very Branson-like marketing move, so ironic!

This is not the first time JetBlue has done this. "Do the right thing" is one of the items B6 tries to indoctrinate in their employees.



FLYi
User currently onlineMaverickM11 From United States of America, joined Apr 2000, 17777 posts, RR: 46
Reply 21, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 18059 times:

Quoting DAL763ER (Reply 12):
Then why not go the CO way?

Why is it the CO way? All the airlines do it.

Quoting DAL763ER (Reply 12):
Send the pax to a hotel (no one says you have to send them to Hilton or Sheraton and the likes...anything cheap ought to do as long as it has a bed and a shower) and everyone will be happy

Considering it's a weather cancellation most, if not all, airlines don't have to pay anything.

Quoting panamair (Reply 11):
I have noticed that recent weather diversions for DL fights from Europe into JFK this past winter have been to other DL hubs instead of to the nearest airport

Is that an actual policy? It's a good one for sure.

Quoting UAORD2000 (Reply 9):
This is so perfect!!

  

Quoting ssublyme (Reply 16):
That would include the bus ride + daylight savings

Figures 



E pur si muove -Galileo
User currently offlineEleVAted From United States of America, joined Feb 2010, 296 posts, RR: 1
Reply 22, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 17251 times:

Quoting UA777222 (Reply 1):
It's unfortunate but VA acted properly. JFK was a joke the last few days. It would have been stupid for them to attempt to land.

The weather monitoring equipment on the field was damaged it was so windy there. I think the number was 1 in 5 arrivals made it in so most area airports (EWR, BOS, ect) were loaded with wide-body diversions who also had to put up or bus their passengers.

Given that they were only operating off of estimated conditions (no accurate real-time conditions), everyone was playing it by ear and personal judgement. Sounds like the crew waited until the last minute to throw in the towel.


Thank you. Bingo, along with a closed runway!

I dodged this storm thankfully, but it was really bad as I read and been told by fellow crew. There is a lot of story telling in that article and of course one side (not uncommon of course) being "reported".

To the OP: It's outrageous if you believe it word for word, line by line.


User currently offlinebjorn14 From Norway, joined Feb 2010, 3614 posts, RR: 2
Reply 23, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 16423 times:

Didn't the airlines learn ANYTHING from the CO incident at RST? Didn't Congress pass a law that makes it illegal to hold pax on a plane for more than 3 hrs? It just seems no one was willing to use any common sense. What suprises me most is the attitude of the FA's thank God there wasn't a REAL emergency...they'd have been the first ones out the door. If it were my airline that's where they would be OUT THE DOOR...no room for lack of professionalism in the cabin!

There I have vented.



"I want to know the voice of God the rest is just details" --A. Einstein
User currently offlinejetjack74 From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 7417 posts, RR: 50
Reply 24, posted (4 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 15849 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Quoting richierich (Reply 2):
Let me start by saying that I do agree that 16 hours is a long time to be expected to stay in an aircraft, and Virgin America had a few opportunities to make this right and did not. But this story is overhyped and one-sided, in my opinion, because it has to be said that the weather in the Northeast US was wild and ridiculous. I'm surprised there were not more horror stories like this.

What I find amusing here is, that the account of some of these passengers makes the crew out to be some sort of mglo-maniacs coming apart at the seams. There was video footage of the captian giving a calm, collected update over the public address. Ok, so they have that on video, but not of the alleged tyrades. That evidence is never captured. It is so easy for these clowns to bash the crew to no end, while the crews themselves get no microphone of their own to egive their account of what went down. In my experience as cabin crew, it is the passengers who are repeatedly out of control during long delays, when things out of our hands completely even when we took steps to avoid

Quoting UA777222 (Reply 1):
It's unfortunate but VA acted properly. JFK was a joke the last few days. It would have been stupid for them to attempt to land.

Well, they did the right thing in a safety sense, but when it comes down to public relations, it was a disaster. I'm not sure who made the call to try and wait it out, but it was a bad move. And the passengers, well they'll never understand. Everything is an outrage to the American public.

Quoting Crosswind (Reply 10):
I never understand why US carriers seem unable to cope with routine operational disruption, and I'm not singling out Virgin America here. I worked for 4 years as a Senior Operations Controller at a large UK charter/low cost carrier, so am very well aware of the airline's perspective of the "operational side" of disruption to scheduled flying and some of the stories are incredible!

Becuase cost is the bottom line. These low-cost airlines are built on minimal capital with little cash reserves to finance irregular operations. In this instance, I believe the big dogs at the top make the operations personnel job increasingly difficult by hamstringing the flow of money to where the fronline employees have little say in how to resolve a bad situation. My bet is, that no one would authorise the off-loading of passengers at SWF and the bussing of the passengers down to JFK becuase of the amount of money it would cost. They probably thought that taking a gamble on the possibilty that JFK would reopen was a better option. Last week, I was flying from DTW to JFK and we diverted to ALB. They cancelled about an hour later and the passengers got bussed to JFK, while Delta laid us over becuase we were about to run out of crew day. I think Delta made the better decison. You make the call



Made from jets!
25 RayChuang : I think we forget that this past few days there has been REALLY bad weather in the US Northeast with powerful rainstorms of incredible strength. As su
26 SHAQ : All airlines do this ! Shame for VA , But at least they gave people a full refund+100$ to spend their next tickets. ( If anyone would want to fly the
27 Post contains images Oshkosh1 : "Starving"? Really?...C'mon. Yeah I'm sure it sucked...and I'm sure some may have been a little hungry...but "starving"? I think this is just another
28 Post contains images UAL Bagsmasher : I was stuck working an AOG aircraft up in SWF over the weekend. I saw the whole thing unfold. The Atlantic Aviation ramp went from ghost town to mini-
29 7673mech : Reading the discussion I would like to make two points: 1. It is easy for all of us to "Monday morning quarterback" the situation now, however as even
30 Post contains links catiii : True story. Check out: http://www.liveatc.net/recordings.php Listen to the one entitled "A sporty afternoon at JFK." Such as one major runway being s
31 Post contains images mcoatc : I guess I'm a bit confused by this statement. You mention that the weather at JFK was freakishly awful for days, so it was a good idea for VA to keep
32 catiii : So then your answer then is for them to shoot the approach and try and land? Listen to the recording, they were reporting +25 knot windshear at 300 f
33 JFKLGANYC : I was flying RyanAir from London to Wroclaw, Poland this summer. After circling for an hour, we diverted to Poznan (sp?) due to T-storms. It was 11pm.
34 Post contains images YULWinterSkies : Again, as i have already stated on other threads, no, no and no. Totally unprofessional. Weather issues are NOT beyond the airlines' control, that th
35 UA777222 : CO's CEO said in a statement in regards to the Congressional action taken to reduce passenger suffering that states if a passenger waits over a certa
36 Post contains links Blueman87 : no they didnt it took jetblue to call for buses then they bus them to jfk and even worse the plane beat them there says the new york post they did no
37 UA777222 : Wind-shear prevented the aircraft from landing. There was no wind-shear when the flight departed and the red-eyes from the night before that got in a
38 Deltaflyertoo : OK, I feel like I'm missing something here. Everytime this happens, the media, A. Net, etc have this long dialogue about flying into weather in first
39 Post contains images Continental : Haha, that's awesome that the plane beat them back to NY!
40 Post contains links OP3000 : ABC's Nightline program just had a report on this flight on tonight's show: http://abcnews.go.com/WN/virgin-amer...angeles-new-york/story?id=10114581
41 theredbaron : Or worse... a shruberry ! One day that stupid law will make someone make a wrong desicion due to $$$$ and we will have a tragedy. 16 hours piece of c
42 Post contains images MaverickM11 : OK, so he publicly stated what everyone was doing anyway Oh brother Given the way this country is going it wouldn't surprise me. Less than 1/100th of
43 sankaps : Nobody expects 100% perfection all of the time, nor is anyone saying the weather-driven diversion was a bad idea. What is expected is a good continge
44 Mir : This is the crux of the issue in this case, as it was in the RST case. In both of them, the airline failed to make sure that the diverting field was
45 planesmith : Two observations - 1: The initial post uses FOX's website - c'mon - you have to REALLY filter down for the truth in anything Fox may say. - 2: Clearl
46 sankaps : Sitting delayed on-board on the ground for two hours is a fairly routine occurence, especially in the US -- if that was all there was to the VA incid
47 Ltbewr : SWF has very few flights in the first place, so little support or staffing was there anyway. In the storm conditions that affected the area around SWF
48 OP3000 : I watched an interview on one of the morning shows with one of the passengers on board in F. He said that from what he was able to gather the ops man
49 Post contains images leezyjet : You people really amaze me. Someone from another country chooses to set up a company in your country (and has to be a minority shareholder because of
50 MCOATC : You're certainly right. Except I wasn't talking about diversion, I was talking about the total lack of a plan when they did divert. The point was tha
51 catiii : How do you know they didn't have a plan in place? As was stated in an earlier post, SWF was a mini-hub that day of diversions. Who's to say that the
52 theredbaron : Sometimes you have contingency plans, but one variable screws everything up. I remember the AM that was diverted a year ago from Oregon I think and r
53 Post contains images MSYPI7185 : Wonder whose kid was in the tower that day! I have traveled many places and I agree mostly with what you say. As far as better products/service I'm n
54 SolarFlyer22 : I think they should have let people off after hr 2. SWF is not that far a drive from NYC. They probably should have diverted to PHL though. Sounds lik
55 sankaps : I think most people agree things can go wrong, resulting in unforrseen disruptions. But how the disruption is handled by the company and the frontlin
56 richierich : Hey, come on now - don't sink to that person's level. The person you quoted was just showing that he is a juvenile and his comment about Branson and
57 Post contains links vs030 : Is this false information being reported or am I misunderstanding something? This video says there were 20 pax that initially deplaned and the others
58 theredbaron : Agreed, I remember like 5 years ago a Charter from MCO to the U.K. did not have any food for the trip and the captain arranged to get 250-300 Macdona
59 UA777222 : I think that's what the major misinterpretation is. When this diversion happened, it was the start of what was to be joke weather for the day. They w
60 timpdx : I'm not the happiest camper with VX these days. My late night flight from JFK to LAX in January was delayed close to 3 hours. It was mechanical, not w
61 Post contains images NASBWI : That, of course, would be assuming that the crew knew well in advance that it would be at least a couple hours or more to repair the problem. Quite h
62 sankaps : It would be interesting to find out under what circumstances / conditions the passengers were given the option to deplane. It could have ranged from
63 EleVAted : Here are the facts because a lot of misinformation around. 1. After circling JFK for almost two hours, due to intense thunderstorms, VX404 diverted to
Top Of Page
Forum Index

This topic is archived and can not be replied to any more.

Printer friendly format

Similar topics:More similar topics...
Virgin Hiring At MCO/LAX/JFK/EWR/IAD posted Fri Mar 26 2004 16:14:38 by Akjetblue
Passengers Trapped On AM SEA Flight For 16 Hours posted Thu Jan 22 2009 02:54:15 by Drunkmuppet
Should QF Drop The LAX-JFK Flight To Save $? posted Wed Sep 17 2008 09:27:02 by BP1
Delta LAX - JFK Flight Diverted To KC posted Mon Sep 15 2008 09:39:56 by Repaulson
AA 16 LAX-JFK Rego Information posted Fri Jun 1 2007 07:12:37 by Carfield
LAX To TPE 5 Hours Longer Than Return Flight posted Fri Sep 9 2005 16:21:38 by GWYIRE
UA 29 JFK-LAX PS Service 3 Hours Delay July 31 posted Mon Aug 1 2005 16:59:22 by Aifos
Virgin Atlantic Flight 8 LAX-LHR - Question posted Sat May 28 2005 09:49:18 by AirxLiban
Drunk AA Pax LAX-JFK 3/18 Dies In Flight posted Sun Mar 20 2005 00:13:57 by LTBEWR
American Flight With Turbulence Over JFK posted Fri Nov 5 2004 05:02:57 by Planemannyc