Aviation News

October 14, 2010

Southwest Reaches Tentative Agreement with Pilots on 737-800 Fleet Addition

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By: BNO News
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Southwest Airlines Pilots’ Association (SWAPA) on Wednesday reached a tentative agreement with Southwest Airlines on the addition of the 737-800 to the carrier’s fleet.

Southwest recently disclosed that it intends to convert current Boeing 737-700 aircraft orders to the larger 737-800s. Adding a new airframe causes the re-opener of the pilots’ contract and this agreement codifies issues related to the new airframe such as pay and work conditions.

“Today, I want to congratulate both, SWAPA and TWU 556, the Union that represents our Flight Attendants, for recognizing the potential long term benefits associated with adding the -800 to our fleet,” said Mike Van de Ven, Southwest Airlines Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer.

The reached agreement continues a history of efforts and collaboration between Southwest Airlines and its pilots on collective goals. The agreement includes a single pay rate for the 737, profitability-based raise added to the hard 2 percent raise in 2011.

“We are still evaluating the needs for training, scheduling, aircraft configuration, and other regulatory considerations, but this is an important step in the due diligence process,” Van de Ven added.

If approved by a majority vote of the pilots, their current contract will be extended by one year. It also includes the potential for wage rate increases based on the Company’s financial performance. Voting will run later this year, from November 1 through December 1.

SWAPA is a non-profit employee organization representing more than 5,900 pilots of Southwest Airlines. SWAPA works to provide a secure and rewarding career for Southwest pilots and their families through negotiating contracts, defending contractual rights and actively promoting professionalism and safety.