American Airlines pilots were able to cancel thousands of July assignments due to a glitch in their scheduling platform, their union claimed. This was a problem for the airline, which is trying to minimize disruptions during a busy travel season.
American stated that it did not expect the problem would affect its operations, even during busy July Fourth weekend. According to the Allied Pilots Association, union representatives and the airline are currently discussing increased pay for pilots whose flights were dropped.
The airline released a statement saying that “certain trip trading transactions were allowed to be processed even though it shouldn’t have been”. “We have already restored the vast majority affected trips and don’t anticipate any operational impacts due to this issue.”
The Allied Pilots Association reported Saturday that more than 12,000 July flights were without a captain, first or both of these officers after pilots dropped their assignments. The APA stated that the airline had restored about 80% of the flights.
Pilots can drop and pick up flights, but it is difficult to find time off during the summer or holidays for airline employees because of high demand.
According to internal statistics, American had over 3,000 scheduled mainline flights on Saturday and were 93% full. However, flights that aren’t staffed add to the strain on airlines.
This glitch happened during a rough start to Fourth of July weekend, when storms and staffing problems caused thousands of U.S. flights delays and hundreds of cancellations.
Similar issues occurred in 2017, when pilots from the United States were able to take a vacation due to a technical problem. Pilots who accepted assignments were offered 150% by the carrier.
American Airlines and its pilots’ union have had a fraught relationship. The airline is currently in contract negotiations. It recently offered almost 17% raises through 2024.
Capt. Sicher, late Saturday night, wrote that “To Mr. Isom’s credit he called me four more times today to promise to mitigate the damage from this crisis.” “We started with a 200% override. However, the details of this pay remain the subject of negotiations. There is no guarantee of the amounts or details.
American Airlines did not respond to Sicher’s message to pilots.
Pilots in America have been protesting the grueling schedules of their flights. They want a new contract to address this issue. In recent weeks, Southwest and Delta pilots have taken part in similar protests.
Sicher was also positive about American contract talks, especially regarding quality-of-life concerns.
He wrote that although no commitments have been made yet, he felt that there have been positive signs that management is willing to work with them to solve long-standing issues in our contract. This will greatly improve our ability to trade trips and, consequently, our quality of living.”