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News from ALPA International

March 20, 2012

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The FlightDeck

In This Issue:

ALPA Galvanizes Industry Efforts to Combat Pilot Fatigue
Conference Highlights Necessary Action to Build on New Safety Regulations

View a photo slideshow
of the conference

The Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l (ALPA), gathered representatives from government agencies, the airlines, and other aviation labor groups at a landmark conference this week to explore how the Federal Aviation Administration’s new pilot fatigue rule could be put into practice and how the airline industry can implement Fatigue Risk Management Programs and other tools to further enhance aviation safety.

“While the Federal Aviation Administration’s release of new, science-based pilot fatigue regulations was extremely important progress in passenger-carrying operations, much more work must be done if we are to truly eliminate pilot fatigue as a safety concern throughout the airline industry,” said Capt. Lee Moak, ALPA’s president. “The Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l, seized the opportunity to bring the industry together to roll up our sleeves and explore how the new regulations will be implemented to ensure a smooth transition to the new FAR Part 117 and position pilots to deliver on their commitment to the highest standards of safety.”

At the conference, more than 160 participants held wide-ranging discussions on all aspects of implementing the new flight- and duty-time regulations and minimum rest requirements, as well as innovative approaches to the fatigue challenge, including making the most of tools such as Fatigue Risk Management Systems to allow flexibility while enhancing safety.

Read more.

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Ex–Im Bank Reauthorization Presents Opportunity for Reform
Legislation Must Protect U.S. Airline Industry Jobs
ALPA president Capt. Lee Moak issued the following statement regarding the U.S. Senate’s procedural vote to block adding the reauthorization of the Export–Import Bank of the United States to other legislation currently under consideration by Senate lawmakers.

“The Air Line Pilots Association, International, does not oppose the Export–Import Bank’s reauthorization and we are hopeful that, with additional time before the final reauthorization is considered, all parties interested in the Bank’s reauthorization, including ALPA, can work together to amend the reauthorization to protect U.S. airline workers’ jobs without putting the Bank’s ultimate reauthorization in jeopardy.

“Over the past five years, the Ex–Im Bank has provided financing for dozens of widebody aircraft. This financing is provided at rates that are not available to U.S. airlines, and many of these Bank-subsidized aircraft are being used to fly routes that are, have been, and could be served by U.S. airlines. U.S. carriers have found that they have needed to withdraw from or not begin flying routes that might otherwise be economically viable. As a result, the Bank’s financing is directly and adversely affecting U.S. airlines and their employees. Further, there is every indication that Bank financing of widebody aircraft is likely to grow rapidly and increasingly threaten U.S. airlines’ ability to compete on international routes, costing ALPA members and other airline industry employees their jobs.

Read more.

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Emirates Enters Dulles–Dubai: Who Financed the Planes?

Click on the image
to view the ad.

ALPA has joined with Delta and the APA in publishing a full-page color ad in two popular Capitol Hill newspapers—Politico and Roll Call—highlighting the subsidies provided to foreign airlines by U.S. taxpayers through the U.S. Export-Import Bank. The ad highlights Boeing 777s financed at below-market rates to Emirates, which are now being flown into the United States in competition with U.S. airlines.

The Bank’s subsidies to foreign airlines gives foreign competitors a cost advantage on international routes, and these subsidies are allowing foreign carriers to drive domestic carriers out of international routes, costing pilots jobs. ALPA Government Affairs is actively working on Capitol Hill to bring a resolution to this subsidy issue and sent a letter last week to lawmakers detailing our position.

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Moak Urges Congressional Support for HIMS
ALPA president Capt. Lee Moak wrote to Senate and House appropriators recently (Senate and House letters), urging them to support the Human Intervention Motivation Study (HIMS), a critical health program for professional airline pilots. HIMS is a federally funded prototype alcohol-and-drug-assistance program that coordinates the identification, assessment, and medical recertification of flight officers. It is a highly successful collaboration between the FAA, air carriers, and pilot representatives.

The HIMS program provides educational materials and conducts seminars and outreach to the pilot community. HIMS coordinates the identification, treatment, and medical recertification and return to the cockpit of flight officers with substance problems. HIMS is an industry-wide effort in which companies, pilot unions, and the FAA work together to further air safety and preserve careers.

By any measure, the HIMS program has been a resounding success. The long-term success rate is 85 to 90 percent, and it is an important safety tool for our aviation system.

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Delta Pilots, Management Exchange Openers
On Tuesday, March 13, the Delta MEC Negotiating Committee and Delta management exchanged Section 6 openers. With Delta pilot contract negotiations now under way, every MEC committee is engaged in some fashion with the “Leading the Industry” Contract 2012 effort.

In the same way that the internal team is working together, the next step is to strengthen the single most important aspect of success in 2012—pilot unity. To that end, the Delta Pilot Network (DPN), a subcommittee of the MEC Communications Committee, is physically expanding its presence to where Delta pilots live all across the country. DPN will provide venues and opportunities to get local pilots together with Pilot Unity Building (P.U.B.) events. These events will allow DPN and ALPA leaders to share information, listen to concerns, address rumors, and receive feedback, all in a casual social setting.

Read more.

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ALPA Security, Jumpseat Reps Meet
Security and Jumpseat chairmen/coordinators representing 23 ALPA MECs met in Herndon, Va., March 13–14, during the first plenary session of the Association’s reorganized security structure. ALPA first vice president and National Safety coordinator Capt. Sean Cassidy (ALA) opened the meeting, providing a general overview of the current state of the ALPA Board of Directors’ safety and security priorities. ALPA’s Aviation Security chair, Capt. Fred Eissler, (FDX) chaired the plenary sessions.

During the course of the two-day event, Security Council and Jumpseat Council members convened in separate break-out sessions to discuss pertinent matters of interest at individual MEC airlines, to redefine each group’s Operations Manuals to ensure conformity with ALPA Administrative Manual Section 85, and to plan for the Association’s 2012 Annual Air Safety Forum. In addition each group discussed a number of matters of interest, which were referred to the Aviation Security chair for consideration and potential follow-up action.

The program included presentations by the Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) chief of Explosive Operations, representatives of TSA’s Security Policy and Industry Engagement division, and ALPA’s Government Affairs Department. The full security structure will next meet in Washington, D.C., during ALPA’s annual Air Safety Forum, August 6–9.

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Stay Connected
Stay connected with your union, your profession, and your industry by reading Air Line Pilot magazine and watching monthly episodes of The FlightDeck.

Find out what ALPA first vice president Capt. Sean Cassidy had to say to the U.S. House of Representatives’ Aviation Subcommittee about the merits of GPS on page 30 of the March issue of Air Line Pilot magazine.

On the 13th installment of The FlightDeck, hear what ALPA president Capt. Lee Moak had to say at the annual NATCA Communicating for Safety conference.

Remember that both Air Line Pilot and The FlightDeck can also be accessed from the members-only portion of the ALPA website at

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ALPA Attends ALEAN Conference
ALPA security representatives attended the Airport Law Enforcement Agencies Network (ALEAN) spring conference in New Orleans, March 13–14. During his remarks, keynote speaker John Pistole, administrator of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), addressed the need for a “risk-based” approach to aviation security and praised the partnership between TSA, labor, industry, and state and local airport law enforcement agencies. The administrator specifically cited the ALPA- and Airlines for America-sponsored Known Crewmember program as a successful example of risk-based screening and discussed the possibility of expanding similar programs in the future, such as PreCheck.

An FBI speaker offered an overview of the agency’s Civil Aviation Security Program and discussed counterterrorism efforts conducted by 42 different agencies within the National Joint Terrorism Task Force. In addition to panel discussions on current airport law enforcement resources and training issues, the agenda included a presentation by Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

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Cargo Conference Next Month
Plans are being finalized for a one-day conference on all-cargo operations to be held April 17 in Washington, D.C. The conference, titled “Air Cargo Safety and Security: Closing the Gaps,” will feature congressional and other government and aviation industry leadership to highlight numerous safety- and security-related deficiencies inherent in all-cargo operations and identify ways to remedy these problems.

The keynote address will be delivered by Rep. Chip Cravaack (R-MN), who transported cargo as a former Northwest Airlines pilot. Cravaack serves on the U.S. House of Representatives’ Transportation & Infrastructure Committee and Homeland Security Committee. The agenda also includes the acting administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration, the chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board, and several senior representatives from government and industry.

The conference is to be held in the historic Blue Room of the Omni Shoreham Hotel. The agenda and registration information are available at

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We Want Photos from the Line
The ALPA Facebook page will be getting a facelift using your photos. Send your best pictures of flying the line and see them posted on the We Are ALPA Facebook page, in Air Line Pilot magazine, and on The FlightDeck. Submit your quality images to

Please adhere to the appropriate FARs, CARs, and company policy when taking pictures. Thanks!

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Other Industry News
U.S. News and World Report says the government is taking a tentative step toward making it easier for airlines to allow passengers to use personal electronic devices such as tablets, e-readers, and music players during takeoffs and landings. Read more.

USA Today reports that airlines are giving satellites a second look for delivering Internet service to passengers in the air. Read more.

• In a press release, Airlines for America (the former Air Transport Association) yesterday called on the U.S. government to reform federal taxes and regulations to enable U.S. airlines to compete globally on a level playing field and help grow the country’s economy. Read more.

• According to Reuters, four leading airlines have warned the British government that there could be problems at London’s airports during this summer’s Olympic Games. Read more.

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On March 20, 1937, an attempted round-the-world flight by Amelia Earhart was thwarted when the starboard tire of her Lockheed Electra burst on takeoff from Honolulu. Earhart had completed the first leg of her journey just three days before, flying from Oakland to Honolulu in 16 hours. Severely damaged, her plane was shipped back to California for repairs.

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Feedback & E-mail Address Changes
Questions or comments on this FastRead? Give us your feedback at

If you have moved or changed your ISP or e-mail address, please update your ALPA records. If you don’t, you will no longer receive the ALPA FastRead and other e-mail bulletins and notices, and once your postal forwarding order expires, you’ll no longer receive the magazine and other ALPA mail. You can do it yourself by going to and logging in. Go to “My ALPA” in the menu at the top of the page, and from there, you’ll be instructed how to make the necessary changes.

If you don’t have access to the members-only section of, you can e-mail your requests by sending them to Be sure to include your member number or enough other information so that we can identify you in the membership database, and tell us what information needs to be updated.

Please note that it is not sufficient just to notify your LEC or MEC of these changes—you should register them with the ALPA Membership Department in Herndon.

Can’t remember your member number or how to log in? Need information about your ALPA insurance programs? These and other questions about ALPA services can be answered by contacting

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Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l
1625 Massachusetts Avenue NW | Washington, DC 20036 | 703-689-2270