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AWACSooner
Topic Author
Posts: 2715
Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2008 12:35 am

AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 6:38 am

Just landed from JFK 30 minutes ago…still sitting on the ramp because the pilot reported there are zero marshallers and ground crew on the ramp right now. Eight other AS flights in the same boat.

Not the first time I’ve seen this with AS in SFO, but even the captain said he has no clue what’s going on right now.

Anyone shine some light on the situation?

Edit: the weather is fine
 
SXDFC
Posts: 2334
Joined: Sun Dec 09, 2007 6:07 pm

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 8:07 am

Probably short handed, and working on a skeleton crew. Much like many other places all around sadly.
 
Dufo
Posts: 837
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 2:41 am

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 8:52 am

SXDFC wrote:
Probably short handed, and working on a skeleton crew. Much like many other places all around sadly.


What is the excuse? Covid again? Same as for crappy service and food?
 
Madmax757
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Joined: Sun Mar 01, 2020 8:12 am

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 10:43 am

I could be wrong, but one of the most expensive cities in the world, the requirements of working at an airport , including background checks and the difficulty just getting to work. Either get used to this type of service or rent a private jet ?
 
AC4500
Posts: 1074
Joined: Sat Oct 03, 2020 3:02 pm

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 11:09 am

When flying AS, connect at PDX whenever possible. :-)

The big SEA and SFO hubs seem to be where these problems mostly occur.
 
MIflyer12
Posts: 11612
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2013 11:58 pm

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 1:11 pm

Madmax757 wrote:
I could be wrong, but one of the most expensive cities in the world, the requirements of working at an airport , including background checks and the difficulty just getting to work. Either get used to this type of service or rent a private jet ?


What's the evidence this is anything more than an AS problem at SFO today? Every other carrier faces those same difficulties in hiring.

The DOT has monthly reports of on-time performance by carrier at the 30 largest U.S. airports. AS has been below average at SFO for the last three monthly reports.
 
airlinepeanuts
Posts: 297
Joined: Fri Mar 13, 2015 4:16 pm

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 1:48 pm

McGee (the ground handler AS started and uses at SEA and SFO among a couple other places) has some internal strife right now, in fact, I noticed a new vendor also handling AS flights in SEA named Unifi.
 
jbooser
Posts: 12
Joined: Thu Jun 15, 2017 12:18 am

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 2:23 pm

This is an issue everywhere for airlines. During the height of the pandemic, airlines were pushing employees to take buyouts and early retirements to avoid furloughs. Now that flight demand is back up, they brought back pre-pandemic flight capacity without pre-pandemic staffing. For example, JetBlue is short over 400 ramp agents at JFK alone.
 
jasoncrh
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Joined: Wed Jun 08, 2005 10:29 pm

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 2:31 pm

But what if SFO is your final destination, as it seems to be here? Pdx would not help here

AC4500 wrote:
When flying AS, connect at PDX whenever possible. :-)

The big SEA and SFO hubs seem to be where these problems mostly occur.
 
737MAX7
Posts: 270
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Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 2:43 pm

There is a reason WN bumped new hire pay to $17/hr ($20 in certain cities) AND dropped the high school diploma/GED requirement for the ramp.
 
d8s
Posts: 212
Joined: Thu Feb 23, 2012 6:45 pm

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 3:14 pm

AWACSooner wrote:
Just landed from JFK 30 minutes ago…still sitting on the ramp because the pilot reported there are zero marshallers and ground crew on the ramp right now. Eight other AS flights in the same boat.

Not the first time I’ve seen this with AS in SFO, but even the captain said he has no clue what’s going on right now.

Anyone shine some light on the situation?

Edit: the weather is fine


Ran in to this in early Jan with AS in SEA, no mentioned of gorund issues before we left or in flight (were already delayed 1h 20 min for crew). Landed at SEA and were told 20-30 min wait...turned in to a 90 min wait. AS on board service isn't much better nowadays, on a KOA-SEA flight and reveived a biscoff and 10 oz can of soda for the entire flight. FA's really don't want to be working.
 
mhockey31091
Posts: 90
Joined: Mon Apr 12, 2010 8:05 am

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 3:14 pm

airlinepeanuts wrote:
McGee (the ground handler AS started and uses at SEA and SFO among a couple other places) has some internal strife right now, in fact, I noticed a new vendor also handling AS flights in SEA named Unifi.

Unifi is a Delta Ground Service (DGS) reincarnation, I believe.
 
frmrCapCadet
Posts: 5657
Joined: Thu May 29, 2008 8:24 pm

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 3:18 pm

I remember after WWII, those veterans who worked on the ground crews and advanced to foreman ranks were held in esteem in our economy. Likewise those guys who kept the engines going. If we want smart reliable people in those positions we need to pay them. I would even bet those folks doing those jobs might respond very well and rise to our expectations if we honored the work they do.
 
AC4500
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Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 3:22 pm

jasoncrh wrote:
But what if SFO is your final destination, as it seems to be here? Pdx would not help here

AC4500 wrote:
When flying AS, connect at PDX whenever possible. :-)

The big SEA and SFO hubs seem to be where these problems mostly occur.

I was joking... my point is that the larger hubs like SEA and SFO seem to be having more staffing-related issues despite having more staff on payroll.
 
toobz
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Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 3:37 pm

My first job was with Ogden Aviation - ramp for AS in PDX. Awful company. It seems AS is notorious for contracting [email protected] companies. You get what you pay for. I wonder why it’s so bad at AS? Does DL not use the same company in SFO? Or is SFO their own employees?
 
7673mech
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Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 3:52 pm

Does AS not have mechanics on site?
It is not hard to park an airplane - up until the post 9/11 cut backs in maintenance this was a mechanic function.
I guess no one wants to go above and beyond anymore.
 
Weatherwatcher1
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Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 3:58 pm

Airport badging and the subsequent background checks make hiring ground crew difficult. Low paying ground crew jobs with high turnover that take months to replace have always been tough. Many applicants fail background checks. The current employment situation exacerbates an issue that has been around for a long time at airports with high cost of living.
 
kalvado
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Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 3:58 pm

Madmax757 wrote:
I could be wrong, but one of the most expensive cities in the world, the requirements of working at an airport , including background checks and the difficulty just getting to work. Either get used to this type of service or rent a private jet ?

Would we see ground crews commuting into the airport like flight crews are commuting to their bases?
 
AtlasRise
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Joined: Thu Dec 22, 2016 5:45 pm

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 4:12 pm

737MAX7 wrote:
There is a reason WN bumped new hire pay to $17/hr ($20 in certain cities) AND dropped the high school diploma/GED requirement for the ramp.


Goodness gracious... I started at $9.25/hr and with a college degree. And it was only about a decade ago. I guess I have really bad luck with timing...
 
AtlasRise
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Joined: Thu Dec 22, 2016 5:45 pm

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 4:14 pm

7673mech wrote:
Does AS not have mechanics on site?
It is not hard to park an airplane - up until the post 9/11 cut backs in maintenance this was a mechanic function.
I guess no one wants to go above and beyond anymore.


It may not be hard to park an airplane for you or for me, but somehow others seem to find ways to damage aircraft.
 
Airontario
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Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 4:17 pm

kalvado wrote:
Madmax757 wrote:
I could be wrong, but one of the most expensive cities in the world, the requirements of working at an airport , including background checks and the difficulty just getting to work. Either get used to this type of service or rent a private jet ?

Would we see ground crews commuting into the airport like flight crews are commuting to their bases?


Only if companies are going to pay for their accommodation while at work. The reason this works for flight crews, is that for the time they're at work, the company is covering their hotel (and food) while they're at work.

If a company could pay for a lodging for ramp crews, they could also just afford to bump up wages to attract local workers.
 
chrisair
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Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 4:34 pm

sfojvjets wrote:
Let's take a moment to reflect on Seattle's big moment this past winter... :D


And winter 2021, and winter 2020, and winter 2019, and winter 2018 and so on. :D
 
JoseSalazar
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Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 4:40 pm

kalvado wrote:
Madmax757 wrote:
I could be wrong, but one of the most expensive cities in the world, the requirements of working at an airport , including background checks and the difficulty just getting to work. Either get used to this type of service or rent a private jet ?

Would we see ground crews commuting into the airport like flight crews are commuting to their bases?

Many pilots and flight attendants have local crashpads in their domicile, who don’t live there, but who don’t have company provided accommodations. They pay $200-$400/month for a bunk bed type setup with multiple beds per room, but not all of them are filled all the time, so it’s not as bad as it seems. I was once in a crashpad with a mechanic who commuted to/from work. I know of a gate agent who did the same. So yes, it does exist. It’s not that common, but not unheard of.
 
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Nomadd
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Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 4:48 pm

I use to fly from Newark to Seatac all the time. Couldn't have picked a worse pair for "We're trying to find a ramp driver".
 
jetwet1
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Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 4:54 pm

frmrCapCadet wrote:
I remember after WWII, those veterans who worked on the ground crews and advanced to foreman ranks were held in esteem in our economy. Likewise those guys who kept the engines going. If we want smart reliable people in those positions we need to pay them. I would even bet those folks doing those jobs might respond very well and rise to our expectations if we honored the work they do.


Airlines will happily pay more, as long as the passengers on the aircraft are happy to pay more, that is where your statement falls flat sadly.
 
737MAX7
Posts: 270
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Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 5:12 pm

AtlasRise wrote:
737MAX7 wrote:
There is a reason WN bumped new hire pay to $17/hr ($20 in certain cities) AND dropped the high school diploma/GED requirement for the ramp.


Goodness gracious... I started at $9.25/hr and with a college degree. And it was only about a decade ago. I guess I have really bad luck with timing...

I started at $10.28 9.5 years ago so I completely understand. Most of the new hires now love the thought of that $32 top out until they started getting mandatory OT every night and every first off day for months on end.
 
airlinepeanuts
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Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 5:12 pm

mhockey31091 wrote:
airlinepeanuts wrote:
McGee (the ground handler AS started and uses at SEA and SFO among a couple other places) has some internal strife right now, in fact, I noticed a new vendor also handling AS flights in SEA named Unifi.

Unifi is a Delta Ground Service (DGS) reincarnation, I believe.


So they’ve handed the ramp (at least partially for now?) to DGS essentially?
 
FLYFIRSTCLASS
Posts: 313
Joined: Fri Jan 14, 2022 7:41 pm

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 5:27 pm

AtlasRise wrote:
737MAX7 wrote:
There is a reason WN bumped new hire pay to $17/hr ($20 in certain cities) AND dropped the high school diploma/GED requirement for the ramp.


Goodness gracious... I started at $9.25/hr and with a college degree. And it was only about a decade ago. I guess I have really bad luck with timing...


Trouble is even at $20/hr in areas like SFO, SEA, SJC, LAX, SAN that is so far below the poverty line people still can't afford it. You would have to rent 2 to a room to make it work. I passed on a job with WN in SEA as the starting pay for a SUPERVISOR was only $22.26 an hour, not worth the headache for that rate.
 
F9Animal
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Joined: Thu Dec 16, 2004 7:13 am

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 5:46 pm

airlinepeanuts wrote:
mhockey31091 wrote:
airlinepeanuts wrote:
McGee (the ground handler AS started and uses at SEA and SFO among a couple other places) has some internal strife right now, in fact, I noticed a new vendor also handling AS flights in SEA named Unifi.

Unifi is a Delta Ground Service (DGS) reincarnation, I believe.


So they’ve handed the ramp (at least partially for now?) to DGS essentially?


I believe UNIFI is doing the lavs and potable water at AS. I could he wrong. I'm an MVP 100K, and I can't recall seeing any UNIFI workers working to load or push aircraft. Let me do some digging and I will find out.

There is always the possibility of a Covid outbreak perhaps? Lose 10-20 rampers suddenly, and it's a recipe for a total meltdown. Especially if they are already really short. As others have mentioned, airlines are struggling to attract workers with the lower wages. I know a few airlines are at the drawing board trying to work on the issue. McGee is offering about $22 an hour in Seattle now. That is contingent on being to work and having excellent attendance. Not too bad if you ask me!
 
IFlyOff
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Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 5:57 pm

Hiring for frontline jobs is tough in every industry. Hotels, grocery stores, fast food and airlines. SFO (along with the rest of California) is too expensive for these workers. Free flight benefits when working directly for an airline loading their planes are meaningless when you're struggling to pay rent and can't afford to travel. Wages will need to go up, so expect to pay more on your next trips.
 
seat1a
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Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 6:15 pm

I'll assume for a moment it's a labor staffing issue or something related to it. I noticed something interesting on Flightradar24 frequently and that is flights arriving early. (Not assuming this happens all the time). Does early arrivals impact workload, productivity, etc? Does scheduling impact this?
 
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DocLightning
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Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 6:26 pm

I remember this happening to me on AS pre-pandemic. We arrived at SFO, taxied to the gate, and waited 40 MINUTES for someone to drive the gate up to the plane. This was on a flight from LAX so it almost doubled our time aboard. We'd gone down to LAX that day to do some plane spotting for my husband's birthday and on arrival at LAX also had to wait almost an hour to disembark. So instead of spending about two hours on a plane that day, we spent almost fours on a plane.

This isn't a California issue. This isn't even an SFO issue. UA, DL, and WN don't have this issue repeatedly. This is an ongoing AS issue for years now. It's gotten to a point where I will pay more to fly a different carrier.
 
sfojvjets
Posts: 536
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Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 6:35 pm

DocLightning wrote:
I remember this happening to me on AS pre-pandemic. We arrived at SFO, taxied to the gate, and waited 40 MINUTES for someone to drive the gate up to the plane. This was on a flight from LAX so it almost doubled our time aboard. We'd gone down to LAX that day to do some plane spotting for my husband's birthday and on arrival at LAX also had to wait almost an hour to disembark. So instead of spending about two hours on a plane that day, we spent almost fours on a plane.

This isn't a California issue. This isn't even an SFO issue. UA, DL, and WN don't have this issue repeatedly. This is an ongoing AS issue for years now. It's gotten to a point where I will pay more to fly a different carrier.

Similar issue happened to me very recently actually, just a week ago.

Flying AS (for the first time in ~4 years, mind you) SFO-LAX. Leave SFO on-time, arrive LAX early. But what happens? We end up sitting on the ground at LAX for ~1 hour. Not even at the gate. We just spent one hour going round and round on this one taxiway, letting other arriving flights pass us as they headed to their gates, while we just went in a circle and waited for a while, until another arriving plane had to pass us and then the cycle repeated–for one hour. What should have been a 50 minute hop instead took two hours! Definitely not going to fly them again, haha... back to UA/WN it is.
 
Flflyer83
Posts: 386
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Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 6:45 pm

Did VX have their own ground staff at SFO prior to the merger?
 
gmcc
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Joined: Tue Apr 25, 2006 3:54 am

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 7:02 pm

Well they are trying to hire people.

https://mcgeeairservices.applicantpro.com/jobs/

But as others have said upthread. Not a lot of incentive when you get $22 an hour on the ramp or $19 an hour working the kitchen at panda express. Probably not a hard choice. Plus probably fewer checks to pass at Panda. Long term the solution will be to automate as much of the ramp as possible and pay higher wages to the remaining ramper.
 
FGITD
Posts: 2184
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2016 1:44 pm

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 7:35 pm

gmcc wrote:
Well they are trying to hire people.

https://mcgeeairservices.applicantpro.com/jobs/

But as others have said upthread. Not a lot of incentive when you get $22 an hour on the ramp or $19 an hour working the kitchen at panda express. Probably not a hard choice. Plus probably fewer checks to pass at Panda. Long term the solution will be to automate as much of the ramp as possible and pay higher wages to the remaining ramper.


There’s no incentive at all. Come work overnights at $19/hr (or much less depending on where you live) in all weather imaginable, holidays and weekends don’t exist for years, and it can be back breaking work. You also get to wait weeks while an extensive background check is done on you, and get to be subject to intensive security limitations, screening and random searches! Oh and every time there’s a recession, you get laid off pretty much immediately.

But the good news is that you can fly for free…space available, limited beneficiaries, and now some airlines are limiting how many tickets a year you get. Also most of the airport staff don’t actually work for an airline, so they get none of those benefits.

I was a department manager for a major international airline in my old life, and I decided to find a new job the same day I discovered that a McDonalds supervisor in the terminal made far more than I did. I was glad for her to be making that money, but when the woman doing scheduling and making burgers is making a far better salary than the guy in charge of ground operations…you get to wondering.
 
DLASFlyer
Posts: 498
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2016 4:06 pm

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 7:38 pm

It's not limited to AS. I experienced similar with Delta at DTW on Saturday.
 
aaway
Posts: 1556
Joined: Tue Oct 21, 2003 2:07 am

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 7:42 pm

sfojvjets wrote:
DocLightning wrote:
I remember this happening to me on AS pre-pandemic. We arrived at SFO, taxied to the gate, and waited 40 MINUTES for someone to drive the gate up to the plane. This was on a flight from LAX so it almost doubled our time aboard. We'd gone down to LAX that day to do some plane spotting for my husband's birthday and on arrival at LAX also had to wait almost an hour to disembark. So instead of spending about two hours on a plane that day, we spent almost fours on a plane.

This isn't a California issue. This isn't even an SFO issue. UA, DL, and WN don't have this issue repeatedly. This is an ongoing AS issue for years now. It's gotten to a point where I will pay more to fly a different carrier.

Similar issue happened to me very recently actually, just a week ago.

Flying AS (for the first time in ~4 years, mind you) SFO-LAX. Leave SFO on-time, arrive LAX early. But what happens? We end up sitting on the ground at LAX for ~1 hour. Not even at the gate. We just spent one hour going round and round on this one taxiway, letting other arriving flights pass us as they headed to their gates, while we just went in a circle and waited for a while, until another arriving plane had to pass us and then the cycle repeated–for one hour. What should have been a 50 minute hop instead took two hours! Definitely not going to fly them again, haha... back to UA/WN it is.


It's unfortunate that AS did not communicate the fact that due to construction at T-6, AS is down a gate. Tight scheduling and/or delays will result in the experience you had.
 
MIflyer12
Posts: 11612
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2013 11:58 pm

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 8:18 pm

gmcc wrote:
Well they are trying to hire people.

https://mcgeeairservices.applicantpro.com/jobs/

But as others have said upthread. Not a lot of incentive when you get $22 an hour on the ramp or $19 an hour working the kitchen at panda express. Probably not a hard choice. Plus probably fewer checks to pass at Panda. Long term the solution will be to automate as much of the ramp as possible and pay higher wages to the remaining ramper.


What do UA/DL/WN pay? Or are the working & advancement conditions so much better that they don't need to offer a big pay differential to restaurant work?
 
gmcc
Posts: 596
Joined: Tue Apr 25, 2006 3:54 am

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 8:24 pm

aaway wrote:
sfojvjets wrote:
DocLightning wrote:
I remember this happening to me on AS pre-pandemic. We arrived at SFO, taxied to the gate, and waited 40 MINUTES for someone to drive the gate up to the plane. This was on a flight from LAX so it almost doubled our time aboard. We'd gone down to LAX that day to do some plane spotting for my husband's birthday and on arrival at LAX also had to wait almost an hour to disembark. So instead of spending about two hours on a plane that day, we spent almost fours on a plane.

This isn't a California issue. This isn't even an SFO issue. UA, DL, and WN don't have this issue repeatedly. This is an ongoing AS issue for years now. It's gotten to a point where I will pay more to fly a different carrier.

Similar issue happened to me very recently actually, just a week ago.

Flying AS (for the first time in ~4 years, mind you) SFO-LAX. Leave SFO on-time, arrive LAX early. But what happens? We end up sitting on the ground at LAX for ~1 hour. Not even at the gate. We just spent one hour going round and round on this one taxiway, letting other arriving flights pass us as they headed to their gates, while we just went in a circle and waited for a while, until another arriving plane had to pass us and then the cycle repeated–for one hour. What should have been a 50 minute hop instead took two hours! Definitely not going to fly them again, haha... back to UA/WN it is.


It's unfortunate that AS did not communicate the fact that due to construction at T-6, AS is down a gate. Tight scheduling and/or delays will result in the experience you had.

It's not just one gate, the entire southeast side of T6 is under the scalpel, pretty much from 64 out to the end of the terminal as seen behind the tramway walkers in the below link.
https://share.earthcam.net/tJ90CoLmq7Tz ... way/view_1
 
goosebayguy
Posts: 727
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 1:12 pm

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 8:33 pm

I started as an engine technician. I can take a jet engine to bits and rebuild it then test it on a test bed, plus diagnose problems. Being UK based I started to see that rail engineers were making more money on very little training. Then I began to see how little training aircraft mechanics were getting. I changed career to become a technical author. I've covered ffighters, helicopters, trains. offshore oil rigs armoured tanks, flight simulators and nuclear power stations. Airlines have pushed down pay far too much for ancillery staff and it is starting to show. Believe me I have seen the training set up at Ethiopian and Delta. Delta was worse than in Russia and Ethiopian was the most modern out there. Yes I've seen the Russian training too.
 
sxf24
Posts: 2001
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2007 12:22 pm

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 8:42 pm

MIflyer12 wrote:
gmcc wrote:
Well they are trying to hire people.

https://mcgeeairservices.applicantpro.com/jobs/

But as others have said upthread. Not a lot of incentive when you get $22 an hour on the ramp or $19 an hour working the kitchen at panda express. Probably not a hard choice. Plus probably fewer checks to pass at Panda. Long term the solution will be to automate as much of the ramp as possible and pay higher wages to the remaining ramper.


What do UA/DL/WN pay? Or are the working & advancement conditions so much better that they don't need to offer a big pay differential to restaurant work?


WN starts at $20.
 
wjcandee
Posts: 11637
Joined: Mon Jun 05, 2000 12:50 am

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 8:44 pm

gmcc wrote:
Well they are trying to hire people.

https://mcgeeairservices.applicantpro.com/jobs/

But as others have said upthread. Not a lot of incentive when you get $22 an hour on the ramp or $19 an hour working the kitchen at panda express. Probably not a hard choice. Plus probably fewer checks to pass at Panda. Long term the solution will be to automate as much of the ramp as possible and pay higher wages to the remaining ramper.


A $3/hr difference in compensation is huge.

Only somebody who lives very comfortably would poo-poo the difference.

That's $120/wk, or $6,000 or more per year.

There was a time where I was happy to get a 25-cent-per-hour raise.
 
smi0006
Posts: 3130
Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2008 7:45 am

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 8:48 pm

aaway wrote:
sfojvjets wrote:
DocLightning wrote:
I remember this happening to me on AS pre-pandemic. We arrived at SFO, taxied to the gate, and waited 40 MINUTES for someone to drive the gate up to the plane. This was on a flight from LAX so it almost doubled our time aboard. We'd gone down to LAX that day to do some plane spotting for my husband's birthday and on arrival at LAX also had to wait almost an hour to disembark. So instead of spending about two hours on a plane that day, we spent almost fours on a plane.

This isn't a California issue. This isn't even an SFO issue. UA, DL, and WN don't have this issue repeatedly. This is an ongoing AS issue for years now. It's gotten to a point where I will pay more to fly a different carrier.

Similar issue happened to me very recently actually, just a week ago.

Flying AS (for the first time in ~4 years, mind you) SFO-LAX. Leave SFO on-time, arrive LAX early. But what happens? We end up sitting on the ground at LAX for ~1 hour. Not even at the gate. We just spent one hour going round and round on this one taxiway, letting other arriving flights pass us as they headed to their gates, while we just went in a circle and waited for a while, until another arriving plane had to pass us and then the cycle repeated–for one hour. What should have been a 50 minute hop instead took two hours! Definitely not going to fly them again, haha... back to UA/WN it is.


It's unfortunate that AS did not communicate the fact that due to construction at T-6, AS is down a gate. Tight scheduling and/or delays will result in the experience you had.


And as someone who worked on the ramp - early arrivals are just as bad as late - we roster to schedule, we can’t afford to build in a buffer too $$s and no staff. So when aircraft arrive early, they have to wait, sometimes we run round to get them unloaded, but it can cause further chaos pulling resources from elsewhere….
 
lhrnue
Posts: 390
Joined: Sat Jun 05, 2010 2:47 pm

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 9:23 pm

Airports, airlines and ground handler all around the world struggle to hire (back) people which they laid off when air traffic collapsed.
 
gmcc
Posts: 596
Joined: Tue Apr 25, 2006 3:54 am

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 9:31 pm

wjcandee wrote:
gmcc wrote:
Well they are trying to hire people.

https://mcgeeairservices.applicantpro.com/jobs/

But as others have said upthread. Not a lot of incentive when you get $22 an hour on the ramp or $19 an hour working the kitchen at panda express. Probably not a hard choice. Plus probably fewer checks to pass at Panda. Long term the solution will be to automate as much of the ramp as possible and pay higher wages to the remaining ramper.


A $3/hr difference in compensation is huge.

Only somebody who lives very comfortably would poo-poo the difference.

That's $120/wk, or $6,000 or more per year.

There was a time where I was happy to get a 25-cent-per-hour raise.

I didn't mean to poo poo the difference, sorry if it came off that way. It was more a commentary on the fact that ramper wages haven't kept up with wage inflation. Wages in the non ramper/aviation sector have adjusted faster than the aviation sector. Also not saying that kitchen work is easy but there is less paperwork/screening involved.
 
wjcandee
Posts: 11637
Joined: Mon Jun 05, 2000 12:50 am

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 9:50 pm

gmcc wrote:
wjcandee wrote:
gmcc wrote:
Well they are trying to hire people.

https://mcgeeairservices.applicantpro.com/jobs/

But as others have said upthread. Not a lot of incentive when you get $22 an hour on the ramp or $19 an hour working the kitchen at panda express. Probably not a hard choice. Plus probably fewer checks to pass at Panda. Long term the solution will be to automate as much of the ramp as possible and pay higher wages to the remaining ramper.


A $3/hr difference in compensation is huge.

Only somebody who lives very comfortably would poo-poo the difference.

That's $120/wk, or $6,000 or more per year.

There was a time where I was happy to get a 25-cent-per-hour raise.


I didn't mean to poo poo the difference, sorry if it came off that way. It was more a commentary on the fact that ramper wages haven't kept up with wage inflation. Wages in the non ramper/aviation sector have adjusted faster than the aviation sector. Also not saying that kitchen work is easy but there is less paperwork/screening involved.


Understood. All good points. Sorry if I read too much into it.
 
airplaneboy
Posts: 905
Joined: Sat May 15, 2004 11:59 am

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 10:25 pm

sxf24 wrote:
MIflyer12 wrote:
gmcc wrote:
Well they are trying to hire people.

https://mcgeeairservices.applicantpro.com/jobs/

But as others have said upthread. Not a lot of incentive when you get $22 an hour on the ramp or $19 an hour working the kitchen at panda express. Probably not a hard choice. Plus probably fewer checks to pass at Panda. Long term the solution will be to automate as much of the ramp as possible and pay higher wages to the remaining ramper.


What do UA/DL/WN pay? Or are the working & advancement conditions so much better that they don't need to offer a big pay differential to restaurant work?


WN starts at $20.


Plus a great 401k, profit sharing and health/dental/vision benefits.
 
sxf24
Posts: 2001
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2007 12:22 pm

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 10:25 pm

airplaneboy wrote:
sxf24 wrote:
MIflyer12 wrote:

What do UA/DL/WN pay? Or are the working & advancement conditions so much better that they don't need to offer a big pay differential to restaurant work?


WN starts at $20.


Plus a great 401k, profit sharing and health/dental/vision benefits.


Yup, but they’re still struggling to hire.
 
awhorto1
Posts: 20
Joined: Sun Mar 12, 2017 10:59 pm

Re: AS Groundcrew meltdown at SFO?

Mon Feb 21, 2022 10:39 pm

It's industry wide. I just "topped out" at 10.5 years in Operations with one of the US3 and if my wife wasn't making decent money we would still be scraping by. We're comfortable now, but I'm still on the lookout for higher wages outside of the industry. I don't want to leave, but if wages don't increase soon I would be accepting a pay cut to stay.

It's rumored that over half of the ACS folks (rampers / gate agents / baggage / check-in) at our biggest hub have less than 2 years with the company. This creates a HUGE problem with reliability, experience, and overall customer experience. All the senior folks all bid AM shift, so the PM shift (especially on the weekends) is essentially 75% new hires. This summer is gonna be interesting to say the least.

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