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Actual Jumpseat Privileges Returning?

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Active member
Nov 28, 2001
A couple weeks ago I jumpseated on Horizon from MFR to PDX. My airline is not affiliated in any way but the agent processing my request was able to verify my employment status on her computer. She said that they’d had the capability at MFR for a couple weeks and that the FAA wanted them to be proficient at using it. I was told the following week at PDX that not all stations had that capability but it was on the way.

I’m hoping this is leading to the return of our cockpit access in the near future.

Does anyone have additional info on this subject?
Here you go just what you were asking for!!!!! When all this stuff finally gets taken care of, everyone owes a big thanks to CAPA. Alpa has done very little to get jumpseats restored and CAPA has taken the lead on getting OUR seats back. Just a little note for all the commercial guys giving the cargo guys a hard time for not recipricating, UPS is the mainstay of CAPA and is one of the hardest fighters to restore the jumpseats.

Five jumpseat coordinators
SWA, AAL) visited with
members of the Transportation
Safety Administration, the
FAA, and other airline managment
personnel this month
to clarify some confusion
about the FAA directive issued
in September.
The original intent of the
directive was never to require
“high tech” verification to
allow jumpseaters back in a
cockpit—in fact, a simple
phone call is sufficient verifi-cation.
However, initially,
Jumpseat Coordinators were
told that we had to come up
with some sort of high-tech,
computer-based, data-sharing
system. We worked on that
aspect from September until
March 2002. That’s when
FAA’s Tom Penland informed
us that we didn’t need to
develop such a high tech solu-tion.
The Jumpseat group that
met in Washington last month
picked apart FAR 121.547
“admission into the cockpit.”
They also worked on writing a
“legal interpretation” of FAR
121.547, as well as a re-write
of the currently obsolete
Security Directive. This
“legal interpretation” will then
be given to all P.O.I.s for the
airlines, as well as the TSA.
TSA will then hopefully have
the guidance, background, and
knowledge, to accept and
endorse this re-write of the
Security Directive.
The FAA will then give the
POIs and their airlines one
standardized set of guidelines
regarding cockpit jumpseats
and usage, which will leave no
room for any separate “inter-pretations”.
The question now: ‘Will
individual airlines agree to use
their agents to make the phone
call required to verify a pilot’s
Alaska Airlines and their
code-share partner, Northwest
Airlines, have a phone system
in place to allow their pilots in
each other’s cockpits, as do
Comair/Delta, CAL/CALEX,
etc. All the FAA and TSA
require is a phone call
between the two, or actually
being able to verify one’s
employment in the computer.
What Management decides to
use, if they want pilots to get
to work, is up to the individual
We are watching as other
code-shares follow suit. As
for UPS, the immediate plan is
to share the newly developed
database with Fedex and
Southwest, for starters.
However, this progress is
dependent on whether FDX
and SWA updates their data-bases
to be compatible with
UPS’. Stay tuned!
I think that this jumpseat situation after Sep. 11th should have been dealt with immediately and on the spot. There has been way too much mickey-mouse bs and still nothing has really been done.
The problem with this proposal is that it requires the gate agents to do some extra work. Also it puts control of the jumpseat squarely in the hands of the gate agent, not in the hands of the captain where it belongs. Those of us who jumpseat regularly have run into a fair number of less than friendly gate agents. I know that many airline employees are bitter about the "extra" priveledges that us pilots get, and now asking them to make phone calls in order for us to exercise those may make them more bitter.

Don't get me wrong, I am glad there is some progress being made, and the majority of gate agents are friendly and helpful. As a commuter any improvement in the jumpseating procedure is welcome.

Instead of having the gate agent make a call before boarding, how about boarding normally and then if the aircraft is full, the captain can ask the gate agent to make a call to allow the jumpseater in the cockpit? Or how about if a jumpseater comes to the desk, the gate agent contact the captain for his instructions on what to do. A gate agent is more likely to make a call if the captain of the flight they are working instructs them to than do it on their own to help out an offline pilot. Particularly if the gate agent is busy. This puts more control and authority in the hands of the captain where it belongs.
Also, a US Air captain offered me the actual on a mainline flight from PIT to SYR about two months ago. Again, no affiliation with my airline. I figured it was just a fluke and didn’t ask any questions. Ended up not needing it anyway.

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