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Eagle CRJ-700's

Wed Feb 20, 2002 7:51 am

When do American Eagle's CRJ 700's enter service?

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Wed Feb 20, 2002 9:34 am

They have to decide who is going to fly them first...

You'll probably end up seeing AA pilots in the front rather than AE... too bad.
Ignorantia juris neminem excusat.
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RE: Eagle CRJ-700's

Wed Feb 20, 2002 9:36 am

Why is this too bad? The more mainline jobs the better, that is unless you like to see pilots being reamed at the regionals for as long as possible.

RE: Eagle CRJ-700's

Wed Feb 20, 2002 9:47 am

I understand that AE has 4 CRJ-700's in operation with 21 more on firm order.
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RE: Eagle CRJ-700's

Wed Feb 20, 2002 10:40 am

The airplanes are in service flying DFWHOU and DFWXNA
The TSA was created to make the post office look efficient!
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RE: Eagle CRJ-700's

Wed Feb 20, 2002 10:41 am

There are three on property now, with at least one in revenue service out of DFW and planned deliveries of 1 per month.

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Reamed At The Regionals?

Wed Feb 20, 2002 11:19 am

I don't understand the "reamed at the regionals" comment.

Yes, regional pilots are being reamed... by the mainline pilots. Restrictive scope clauses only go to constrict the entire route system. You kill the regionals, you kill the feed into the hubs, you kill the mainline. Sounds like a lack of common sense to me.

I support the regional flying of larger aircraft because it gives them more leverage to combat the mainline pilots. Mainline pilots continually speak of lowering the bar the accomodate regional pilots. Well, I have an idea - why don't you raise it? Regional pilots are no less skilled or qualified than mainlines pilots, yet they are constantly placed on a lower par. Again, no common sense.

The arrogance, greed and narrow-sightedness of mainlines pilots will end up being the demise of the aviation industry - not fundamentalistic terrorists.
Ignorantia juris neminem excusat.
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RE: Reamed At The Regionals?

Wed Feb 20, 2002 12:32 pm

They are actually flying DFW-HOU and DFW-OKC now Very nice aircraft from what I have heard...we are getting alot of positive comments about them.
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RE: Eagle CRJ-700's

Wed Feb 20, 2002 1:15 pm

what was the day of its first revenue flight???
Interesting they launched it with little fanfare.
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RE: Eagle CRJ-700's

Wed Feb 20, 2002 1:41 pm

I saw one of these in person at HOU last November, so I assume they are flying DFW-HOU.
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RE: Reaming

Wed Feb 20, 2002 2:00 pm

I believe what KAUSpilot is referring to is the disproportionately low payscale that the regionals have. Traditionally, it was accepted because regionals were considered a 'training ground' (although, hey, does it really mater if you hold power over the lives of 19 people or 380?). And traditionally, regionals largely fed into hubs, rarely venturing more than 350nm from a hub (on average, perhaps 200nm).

But now, with the advent of the RJ, regionals can fly far longer legs (for example, Horizon flies LAX-BOI in a CRJ700) that used to be the exclusive property of mainline. Corporate executives would LOVE to get rid of scope agreements and let the regionals fly 90-120 passenger aircraft, trading in higher-paid mainline pilots for very low wage regional pilots.

I am not current on wages, but I know that once upon a time CRJ captains who had been with the company 10 years made something like 50 bucks an hour. Not bad, until you consider that you can only fly 1200 hours a year. Even with max overtime (read: no life) $80 grand would be pretty impossible to make. Lots of them probably don't make $65 grand.

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RE: Eagle CRJ-700's

Wed Feb 20, 2002 2:42 pm

As for AA pilots taking the RJ slots: Unfortunately, the flowback is not working like they thought it would! It's cheaper to pay AA pilots to stay home because it would create too many training events. Very few have actually gone to ground school.

"But now, with the advent of the RJ, regionals can fly far longer legs that used to be the exclusive property of mainline."

This is exactly why the number of seats on AE has been capped. The AA pilots had the foresight to protect themselves. If AMR could farm out more trips to AE and cut mainline flying, APA pilots would lose. This is why the verbage protecting them was included in their contract. They know AMR will screw them at any moment to save a buck. One can't fault the APA pilots for protecting what's theirs. AMR is doing whatever it can to get as much domestic flying in the hands of Eagle. Then brazenly farm out almost 20% of that flying to "American Connection" while furloughing from AE. It's strictly a financial thing, but it is in direct violation of the "scope clauses." the way: The AE ALPA boards say that two of the three CRJs are already down for mx!


RE: Eagle CRJ-700's

Wed Feb 20, 2002 2:55 pm

by the way: The AE ALPA boards say that two of the three CRJs are already down for mx!

What does this mean?

AE is continuing to reduce available seat miles by removing seats from their S340's and ATR-series turboprops, and accelerating the replacement of these aircraft with RJ's. In fact, they plan on being all jet fleet by 2005.

What I don't understand is why the APA proposed that AE combine with AA insead of giving them relief from the cap.

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RE: Eagle CRJ-700's

Wed Feb 20, 2002 9:50 pm

He means 2 of the 3 CRJ's are out of service due to maintenace problems.
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Arrogant Assumptions

Wed Feb 20, 2002 10:15 pm

Mainline pilots are arrogant to think that certain routes (BOI-LAX for your example) belong exclusively to them. The routes belong to the company and has such, the company has the right to utilize whatever resources necessary to ensure profitable fleet/network management.

Mainline pilots are up in arms, screaming the regionals will put them out of business. How ignorant. Common sense - RJs will not fly JFK-LAX, SEA-NRT or DFW-LAX. Mainlines pilots need to understand that every route cannot support a 100+-seat aircraft. And some city pairings do not require larger jets all day, everyday. The advent of small jets allowed for a balance to be struck in that passengers could receive high quality jet service without requiring a MD-80 or 737.

Mainlines also need to understand that small jet will not replace mainline jobs. Should the domestic market become saturated with small jets to capacity - a critical mass so to speak of big jets and small jets, let's remember that there is a whole big world out there and I'm sure that the company will find a way to ensure that big jets operations do not flutter into extinction.

Another issue within the scope clauses is the simple fact that one group is dictating the operations of another, seperate corporate identity. Mainline pilots are saying what, when, where and how the regionals can fly - even though they are operated as two distinct companies. That'd be like Pizza Hut telling Taco Bell to make fewer tacos and less nachos because Pizza Hut and Taco Bell are in competition with one another. HELLO - although they are owned by the same parent company, neither one has a right to set operational limits on the other. "Oh, but the company should have not approved that in the TA then." Mainlines pilots at Delta said scope was the major sticking point of their last contract negotiations and threatened to strike should the company not give in. Well, which would you prefer - a complete operational shutdown due to a strike or taking restrictive language and dealing with it later? With the pilots lying on the floor crying, screaming and kicking their feet, the companies don't have much choice but to accept the harmfuls scope language and hope that a compromise can be worked out once a strike is no longer a possibility.

The simple fact that Delta ALPA is now pursuing a grievance that would bring back Delta pilots at the cost of furloughing DCI pilots is completely disgusting. This shows nothing but the most arrogant, selfish and irresponsible behavior. With bring back the mainline pilots while furloughing DCI pilots will not help the company fiscally as mainline pilot costs are significantly higher than DCI pilot costs. Sure, bring the mainline guys back but they'll have nothing to do with no mainline growth and will only cause the company continue to hemorage cash. Smart move, guys. You got into a volatile industry - you need to suck in your gut and live with the unfornuate consequences of recent events. Besides, with mainline salaries well over $250,000/yr, I don't think you're going to be filing for food stamps anytime soon like most regional first officers.

*Stepping off soap box*

Man, what a way to start my morning!
Ignorantia juris neminem excusat.
Tan Flyr
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RE: Eagle CRJ-700's

Wed Feb 20, 2002 11:28 pm

Well put ATL2CDG about the marketing of routes. For example, AA tried off-n-on for 15 years to make DFW-BFL work profitably. Just did not pan out. The CRJ is the perfect aircraft for a route like that, or perhaps a STL-FAT,STL-BOI or off season TUS-STL and other small/med sized markets.(remember, its the demographics of a market not just size)

Every 50-70 pax that can be fed into mainline at any hub from a smaller market increases loads/profits/eventually more mainline flights. I just don't understand why so many cannot understand that simple premise. I would like to think that pilots , at any airline, including AA, would want their company to grow and to haul as many pax as possible profitably. Sometimes, I'm not sure that attitude exists, anywhere.
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Wake Up Mainline

Thu Feb 21, 2002 12:41 am

ATL2CDG is right on. I'm all for protecting the jobs of mainline pilots. However, I'm not a big fan of mainline pilots making 250,000-400,000 a year with 5 houses, 4 cars, 6 vacations, and 3 ex-wives to support. The pay at the top end HAS to come down and the pay at the bottom end HAS to come up. If the mainline pilots want to turn tides in their favor perhaps they should help their regional brothers and sisters get into the ballgame and the costs of operating RJ's will rise. Then we'll be on a more level playing field. Management won't have the "ace in the hole" cheap RJ flying to play against them. And yes, the bigger RJ's could concievably fly any domestic route, lookout major airlines it's coming. Help us or you're going to be fighting us for a long time.
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RE: Wake Up Mainline

Thu Feb 21, 2002 1:47 am

AA and AE should just have 1 pilot group. Like truckers a little bit, you get paid by the mile and paid by the aircraft you fly the bigger the more a pilot can start with AA on a saab340 work his or her way up to the 777....
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RE: Wake Up Mainline

Thu Feb 21, 2002 2:57 am

That's what we've been fighting for at Continental for 3 years. A single combined pilot group at a carrier like AA/AE or CO/COEX is very feasable. Both pilot groups for years have been intertwined in scheduling/deadheading/same uniform/flow-through agreements. The guys at the top (Gordon and Don) don't like it as it will inevitably lead to increased salaries and retirement plans for the Eagle's and Expresses. You get to ax an entire middle management structure at the regionals as redundencies occur with a single carrier, but the CEO's don't ever want to let go of the power they have to pit each group against each other in a lowest bidder contest for aircraft and routes flown.
Actually flown: EMB-120 EMB-145 B717 B737 B757 B767
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RE: Eagle CRJ-700's

Thu Feb 21, 2002 7:22 am

Didn't Continental just sell off COex to Express Jet holdings?
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RE: Eagle CRJ-700's

Thu Feb 21, 2002 8:13 am

I gt the new issue of Airways in the mail and it's has a cool section about Amerian Eagle and their RJ
"He was right, it is a screaming metal deathtrap!"-Cosmo (from the Fairly Oddparents)
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ERJ 140s?

Thu Feb 21, 2002 9:00 am

I just got that issue as well. Sorry to change the subject slightly, but has anyone been on one of the new ERJ 140s? Any impressions of those? How many are currently in the AE fleet?

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Alternative Take

Thu Feb 21, 2002 10:14 am

ATL2CDG, you make a very good point.

However, some of my point is that regionals are flying more routes not because of aircraft economics, but rather, because the cost of operation, with the very low regional salaries, totals out to less.

In the 'traditional' sense, instead of LAX-BOI, you'd fly LAX-PDX or LAX-SEA and then hop a regional to BOI. This worked in the system where it was expected that everyone would migrate to majors.

But you essentially have to force the corporate owners to maintain the mainline. Why not? Because otherwise, without those unions, salaries will fall. Corporate would love to pay everyone based on the regional payrates (and maybe bump the top 20-30% for flying a 767, for example).

What's happening right now is, where possible, the opportunity is being seized to force the payscale downwards, by furloughing mainline pilots and increasing regional size. All the talk of 'bringing the bottom up' is nice, but that's not the intent of corporate headquarters. That's NEVER their intent. The way to get pilots better paid is to REDUCE the size of the regionals -- let mainline pilots fly anything 50 pax or more, and any jets, for example. Getting pilots into mainline jobs is by far the best way to improve their quality of life, rather than trying the 'well, let's get everything flown by regionals, and then maybe they'll increase the payrate.' That, in fact, is simply reinventing the existing situation.

In my opinion, the regional concept is being abused for the financial advantage of the corporate headquarters. Sure, that's their job, but it's the job of the pilots union to protect wages as well.

And lastly, the salary figures are misleading when you factor in that the top end folks don't usually get there until 4 or 5 years before they hit age 60.

Heck, I know plenty of 30+ RJ captains right now who haven't even been able to make the transition. Given the current economics, they won't be mainline CA's until they are 40-44 years old, then they've got a whole 16 years until they are booted. (in the US, that is)
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RE: Alternative Take

Thu Feb 21, 2002 12:00 pm

Let me tell you a statistic that is very telling. The average pay for an airline captain flying a "large" aircraft (over 12,500 pounds) is 130,000 dollars a year. OK, there is not a regional captain out there making anywhere near that. Especially when you consider that 12,500 and obove includes every type of regional aircraft out there, Beech 1900s, Saabs, Dashes, even Metroliners. There is no way in hades that the majors will be able to employ us all and have our unions "protect those kind of salaries." The game has changed boys and girls. How much do you think the airline captains at the majors are making to boost that bottom line? Buku bucks is how much. I have two good friends flying for 2 of the top majors in the US as F/O's who make 140,000 plus. C'mon, are we going to butt our heads and drive our airlines into the dirt over protecting wages that are completely out of whack?
The "traditional" methods are out the window. Like it or not, the RJ's have changed everything about this industry.

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