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SWA Pilot Newsline 1/11/02

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Rob Beeks

SWA Captain
Nov 26, 2001
The following info is straight from the SWA VP Flight Ops newsletter:

"This is the SWA Flight Operations Newsline for January 11, 2002.

We are very happy to report that the Company and SWAPA are conducting discussions on the –200 Retirement Program. Meetings this week concerned Seniority issues, Training, and Currency. Although it is too early to project an outcome of these meetings, we feel confident that both parties working together can find a solution that will allow for a mixed fleet operation in Dallas and Houston and at the same time create a process that will also allow Pilots in other domiciles the ability, if they choose, to maintain-200 currency and bid for Dallas and Houston trips. We will keep you informed of the progress of these very important discussions.

Read Before Fly 02-04 gives a general overview of our recent SMF runway incident. An internal investigation is ongoing and consequently it is too early to speculate on the investigations outcome. As we have in the past, we will keep you informed.

As you are all aware, the loads over the holidays were very good and even exceeded the Company’s expectations. Hopefully they will continue to trend in a positive direction. Thanks for all your work everyday.

We took delivery of two new –700 aircraft on the 2nd and 7th of January. These replaced N60SW and N63SW which have been returned to the owner. Two more aircraft will be delivered in late January/early February for planned service increases on the East Coast.

Our first new hire class began on January 3rd and the second will start on January 17th. Currently, we plan one class in February, two in March and April, one in May, and one in August. Class size will be twenty each.

We continue to get good quality Pilot applications on a daily basis and we will interview every month in the foreseeable future. The military’s “Stop Loss” program has affected many of our applicants’ availability, but they plan to update their manning requirements in the next thirty to sixty days. There are some very minor changes to both the application requirement and procedures the information is available on the Southwest Airlines website (southwest.com)

Currently, we have thirty-five of our pilots on long term (1yr. or longer) military leave. This is a tremendous strain on them as well as their families and it is our sincerest hope that their mission will be completed safely and in a timely manner. We are all thankful for the men and women that serve in our military that make it possible for us to enjoy the freedoms that we do.

We know by now you have read RBF 02-03 written by Greg Wells, our new Vice President of Safety and Security. It addresses compliance at the security screening checkpoints. This new information made the information we relayed to you in RBF 01-165 inaccurate or conflicting and we just rescinded RBF 01-165. The information Greg received from our FAA Regional Security Administrator was clear. No airport nor airline may enforce any less than what the FAA security directives dictate. Airport Directors or airlines may add regulations over and above the minimums in the Security Directive. At the checkpoints where Southwest Airlines is the custodian, we can mitigate these “enhancements” back to the basic security directives. At checkpoints where we are not the custodian, if they choose to add regulations, we can only go to the custodial airline or the airport director and request they revert to the basic directive. We have no other authority over them. Comply with their request and if the request seemed to be in excess of the basic security directive call a Chief Pilot ASAP. We will immediately follow up. We are anticipating at least more standardization at all checkpoints once the FEDs take over on February 14th.

Thanks and God bless you all."

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