Posts: 237
Joined: Sun Aug 20, 2000 5:56 am

NWA Mechanics Demands

Thu Nov 30, 2000 10:26 am

I'm interested in what everybodys thoughts and opinions are on the NWA Mech. demands for a new contract. They seem to be pretty far-fetched to me. They want mechanics making 60.00 per hour, GOOD GOD! thats more than a lot of pilots make at NW! I realize mechanics are VERY IMPORTANT, but they want a 100% increase in pay. I cant believe it will happen. If it does, the ramp rats will want their cut and so on down the line. The mpls star tribune had the article in todays paper. It was very interesting. I also read some where that this is the reason the DC-10 replacement is taking so long. Nothing will happen untill the Mech labor disput is resolved.
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RE: NWA Mechanics Demands

Thu Nov 30, 2000 10:30 am

They'll get he raise, and then be laid off.
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RE: NWA Mechanics Demands

Thu Nov 30, 2000 11:16 am

I think it is a good idea for NW top level guys to put the DC10 replacement on hold and get this mechanic deal sorted out.
All I know is the mechanics have not had a contract for a very long time so it is about time something was done about it.I too heard 60.00/hr which seems alittle high.

But United set the standard for airline unions when they had no choice but to give in to their pilots over the summer.
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RE: NWA Mechanics Demands

Thu Nov 30, 2000 2:03 pm

If the free market of supply/demand works as it should, an employee group deserves whatever they can it 5 dollars an hour or 100 dollars an hour. If one's skills are in demand he sure can make 60 dolars an hour. The free market does not just apply to the starch shirted pinstriped crowd. I don't hear many complaints about the "free market" from elitists when a slowing economy dictates concessions. The pendlum is swinging industry wide, no doubt about it. Whether or not a company wants to compensate by lowering profits or executive perks, or raise ticket prices is up to them, as it is just a cost of doing business. The free market will adjust if it all works out or not. If the shortage of AMT's become acute enough even the cheapo airlines will have to ante up---That is, unless the federal government ( at the behest of business lobbying ) tries to indulge in de-facto wage fixing to subsidize air travel prices at their current level.
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RE: NWA Mechanics Demands

Thu Nov 30, 2000 2:29 pm

Just for comparison, what does a mechanic at a different airline, for example AA or UA, make per hour. I really have no idea and would like to see how much higher it would be compared to other airlines.
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RE: NWA Mechanics Demands

Thu Nov 30, 2000 2:46 pm

a few reasons why northwest mechanics can demand those wages:
1. shortage of mechanics industry wide
2. replaced iam union which believes in equal pay for all members; ramp, stores, customer service, etc...
3. voted amfa union, an aircraft mechanics union looking out for the mechanics best interest.
4. when negotiating you demand the highest possible amount, the company is always going to work down on the requested amount.

northwest has been operating on record profits over the last few years. the mechanics have gone without a contract and working for the industry norm of 15.00-27.00 an hr. airlines have been getting away with this for to long. nothing against what they do but someone who handles bags is worth 21.00 an hr.? if thats the case aircraft mechanics are worth 60.00 because to do our job we have to be licensed, require years of training, have spent thousands of dollars on tools, and our quality of life is not the greatest. fortunately airlines have guys like myself that love what we do and believe in giving the customer the safest reliable product we can.
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RE: NWA Mechanics Demands

Thu Nov 30, 2000 2:47 pm

The pay / quality of life issues in aviation maintenance have been suppressed for too long. A shakeout in this industry is long overdue. As a certificated Airframe & Powerplant technician, I carry the same or greater resposibility for safety of flight then the pilots do, and it's about time I'm compensated a similar amount. $60/hr is just a starting point for negotiations. I'm betting it'll be around $40/hr when all is said and done.

Thanks to the railway labor act, Northwest AMT's have been without a contract for four years!
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RE: NWA Mechanics Demands

Thu Nov 30, 2000 5:02 pm

Is $60 an hour unreasonable? Somebody said this would be more than many pilots at NW. I know at Delta a second year MD88 FO gets right about that. Thats a guy starting his career while the mechanic has at least seven years with the company. The average wage for aircraft mechanics is appalling considering the responsblity. My first job nine years ago paid $7.50/hr. The only way to raise the bottom wages is to raise the top end. They will end up around $40/hr and all of the others will follow suit at their next contract.
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RE: NWA Mechanics Demands

Thu Nov 30, 2000 6:29 pm

A lot of mechanics at the town garage make more then aircraft mechanics, but don't have to sign anything that makes them libel for anything they do. A&P's can go to jail if they don't do their job right.

$60 I hope they get all of it.
nwa man
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RE: NWA Mechanics Demands

Fri Dec 01, 2000 6:20 am

No offense to any of the mechanics here, but in my opinion, $60 per hour is absolutely ludicrous. Look at it this way...A mechanic making $60 per hour (the proposed maximum), working 40 hours per week, and 50 weeks a year (taking two weeks off a year) would make $120,000 per year, and that's before taxes! If they work some overtime (which most, if not all mechanics do) and don't take vacations, they could be pushing $150,000 per year, more than most pilots, not to mention most doctors, lawyers, and senators! If the mechanics do strike, which is a very real possibility, considering that NW's plan centers around 14% raises for most mechanics, I have to worry about the airline. A mechanic's strike is the main thing that brought Eastern under, and it could happen to NW.

Create your own luck.
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RE: NWA Mechanics Demands

Fri Dec 01, 2000 11:20 am

How is $120.000 a year ridiculous? Many starting f.o.'s with major carriers make that, with much less experience than your average mechanic. I am a mechanic and I can tell you that the job is worth AT LEAST that much. We have endured a minimum of 1800 hours of training before we are eligible to get our license. We work horrible hours. We work with nasty chemicals in bad conditions. And many, many, many of us are FLEEING the industry because of it. The butcher at the grocery store makes more money than I do. You pilots are going to have to wake up to this, because many experienced mechanics are retiring and there is NO ONE there to take their place. The reason? It doesn't pay to be an aircraft mechanic. We work horrible hours. and so on.... Most kids entering technical school now are going to IT training and jobs. That trend is going to have to be reversed or ALL airlines will suffer for it. If the public has to pay more to fly in order to pay a mechanic what they are worth.. so be it! Otherwise, you are not going to have anyone to keep that airplane flying for you anymore....
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RE: NWA Mechanics Demands

Fri Dec 01, 2000 11:30 am

About possibility of NW going under- won't happen. They have enough cash to weather out strike. Eastern had no cash- NW has. Quite a different situation we are looking at. About making around 150 000 a year after overtime... That's a lot of money any way you look at it. But remember, it's the "PROPOSED MAXIMUM". Not all mechanics will make that kind of money. People think pilots make 300 000 a year, when in fact few do. It will take a long time for a newly hired mechanic to reach that figure.
$60 is a lot of money- but mechanics have a valid point in wanting a raise. It's long overdue. But they won't get it. It's just a number they're throwing around so 30 or 40 doesn't sound so bad for shareholders.

RE: NWA Mechanics Demands

Fri Dec 01, 2000 12:55 pm

Its about time ALL Technicians change their way of thinking. Why do we accept what the airlines say we are worth? They compensate themselves handsomely along with the Pilot group do they not? Yet when it comes down to the Technicians who alone ensure a safe and airworthy aircraft there is such reluctance to pay a wage that more realistically represents the enourmous liabilities of our jobs???

When a Technician signs-off that logbook or job-card that signature is good for the life of the aircraft!! If 20 years elapse and you were the only individual that performed that task guess what? YOU STILL OWN IT!!! You ALONE will be held ACCOUNTABLE for any incident relating to that task. Are you reading me?? So how can you say we are fairly compensated when considering the on-going liabilities of each aircraft we service or repair???

Here is a little math....No Technician = No Aircraft = No Flight!!! The pilots won't fix the airplanes. How about the foremen or supervisors?? Anyone?? Eventually everything would be grounded. Thats how important we are but yet were treated with disdain?? Boggles the mind doesn't it??

I must commend the Technicians at NWA and the AMFA for attempting to raise the level of compensation and respect that ALL Aircraft Technicians are so deserving of. After all are we not licensed professionals subject to prosecution by the FAA for any infraction we might commit??? Darn straight we are!!

The NWA Technicians are poised to change the industry's perception and treatment of Aircraft Technicians everywhere. I pray that they stand strong and unified against the corporate greed of NWAC. For the outcome of their negotiations will determine the future of all Aviation Technicians. All eyes are watching and waiting. Keep the faith and best wishes for a speedy resolve.
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RE: NWA Mechanics Demands

Fri Dec 01, 2000 1:47 pm

Battlewagon 62: AMEN! And the best of luck to the AMT's at NWA. Take care. ( Does e-trons ring a bell? )  . Take care man!
Posts: 237
Joined: Sun Aug 20, 2000 5:56 am

RE: NWA Mechanics Demands

Fri Dec 01, 2000 2:00 pm

Thanks for all the info on this hot topic. I have learned a lot on all the posts. I realise even more what a tough job an Airline mechanic has. I just hope the two sides can come to some kind of an aggrement.I have always heard that NW has some the best mechanics in the business, so please try and be realistic, that goes for both sides. thank you.

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