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Congressional Hearings

blusk
Aviator C
Southwest Airlines will be providing testimony to today's (Thursday, April 3) hearing of the House of Representatives' Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, and our Executive Chairman, Herb Kelleher, and CEO Gary Kelly are scheduled to testify.  The hearing begins at 9:oo a.m. Central Time and can be viewed at the Committee's web site.  You can also access our press release by clicking here. Friday, April 4 Just as a form of recap, for those of you who weren't able to watch the entire hearing or read all the testimony, here are a couple of excerpts from Herb's and Gary's testimony. Excerpts from Herb's testimony: Southwest, through the dedication, energy, and warming hearts of its much beloved and cherished Employees, has faithfully delivered on its original promise of 'more value for less fare' for 37 years: In 1966, when I started work on bringing Southwest into being, we said we are going to free the American people to fly-and we did. At that time, something like only 15-20 percent of adults in the U.S. had ever flown on a single commercial airline flight. Today, that number stands at around 85 percent. Southwest said we're going to get you there on time-and we did. Among major airlines in existence in 1987, Southwest has the best cumulative Customer Satisfaction record since the inception of such statistics in 1987-21 years ago. Southwest, for many decades the most heavily unionized of the major airlines, said we are going to take care of our splendid People-and we did.  Southwest instituted the first Employee ProfitSharing Plan in the American airline industry, and no Southwest Employee has, ever, sustained an involuntary furlough. And, finally, we said we're going to operate the safest airline in the world-and we have. After 16 million flights carrying 1.2 billion passengers without a single-not one-passenger accident fatality, Southwest Airlines' record is intact today. Excerpts from Gary's testimony: Southwest Airlines has been a great success at a great many things for 37 years. We believe our People are the best in the aviation industry, and they have enormous devotion to our Company and pride in its results. Above all, the Safety of our People, our Customers, and our own families is my top priority. And, it is Southwest Airlines' top priority. Our airplanes are designed to be safe, and our Maintenance program is designed to keep them safe. Our Safety record is one of which anyone would be justifiably proud. I believe, deeply, that we have the best Maintenance and Engineering Employees in the airline industry. I want to assure Congress and the American People that Southwest will not rest on our Safety record, no matter good it may be. I commit to you, we will constructively and aggressively address the issues raised by the FAA and this committee to enable our proud, safe airline to continue as the safest in the world. Our record makes credible this aspiration. Our Southwest People will accept nothing less. Our Customers deserve nothing less.
112 Comments
Gus_Randall
Explorer C
I'm very disturbed by allegations relating to Southwest's maintenance program and inspections. CNN's story about wistleblowers alleging that Southwest requested that a specific government inspector be reassigned (http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/04/02/southwest.faa.inspection/index.html) is particularly disturbing. I am very, very uncomfortable about flying yet I do so regularly for my work in Texas. Southwest has always been my first choice in flying because until that incident in Chicago, the airline had never had a fatality. I originally attributed this to Southwest's commitment to quality and safety. With the latest allegations, I wonder whether it would be more appropriate to attribute Southwest's safety record to luck. It is time for Southwest's "Tylenol Moment." Southwest needs to get out in front, say "We screwed up; we took our eye off the ball, forgetting that our greatest assets are our employees and our customers (particularly their trust and loyalty). In a time where the airline industry is facing unprecedented challenges due to fuel prices, we cannot allow ourselves to forget our core values and responsibilities. We deeply regret this episode but will work to ensure that we learn from it and are thankful that no one was injured as a result of this lapse. Southwest is committed to providing high quality service at reasonable prices and safety is an important part of that service." Now get out there and say it. Stop saying "Yes, planes went out without inspections but no one was at risk and no one got hurt so don't worry about it." If a person shoots a gun in the air and it doesn't kill anyone when it comes back down, that doesn't excuse the person who fired the gun recklessly.
Maicon_Kopelke
Explorer C
Hi Folks; IÂ
Mike_Patel
Explorer C
SWA has done unreversable damage to their reputation by trying to save a few dollars at the expense of public safety. They will now blame this on a few "rogue" employees and claim to have remedied thier problem. A former loyal customer
Ross_Collier
Explorer C
I LOVE SOUTHWEST AIRLINES! yay!
Stephanie_Lentz
Explorer C
Dear Southwest, As an American air traveler, I have been increasingly concerned with the safety of the nation's "economy airlines" as the economics of flying have seemingly decreased profit margins over the last 10 years (higher gas prices, lower market rates). It has been my fear that in an effort to sustain themselves, airlines have been pressured to increase the numbers of flights they operate per day, meaning less attention would be paid to inspections and matters of safety. This was not a confirmed fact, but simply a suspicion I had based on my observations as a frequent flyer. The flying experience has seemed increasingly more frenzied and less professional for some time now and it only seems to get worse. I have never been a huge fan of flying, but in the past 5 years or so, my anxiety level increased dramatically. My trust in the thoroughness of airplane pre-flight inspections erroded as it appeared to me that more importance was being placed on churning out as many flights as possible, rather than taking time to ensure quality and safety. The findings of the FAA regarding your disregard of Federal Regulations has confirmed my suspicion and I am completely and utterly disgusted by your disregard for the safety of your customers and personel. This is probably the most potent example of corporate greed I have ever witnessed and I think it will severely impact your company's credibilty, even among your most loyal customers. I know that personally I have a trip scheduled with Southwest coming up next week and I will be cancelling it immediately and flying United instead. I will not be flying with your airline again unless I am convinced by your actions that you are committed to sweeping change amongst your organizations safety policies. I cannot trust a company that has, apparently, so little regard for human life. - Stephanie
Jim14
Explorer C
The investigation should prove insightful as it is coming to light that numerous people -- both within Southwest as well as the FAA -- appear to have been aware for some time of the non-compliance. This "oversight" or "misunderstanding" is now appearing as a total disregard for safety and human life (both for passengers and Southwest employees on these planes), orchestrated by people who seemed to have known exactly what was happening. You can only plead ignorance for so long.
J__Rose
Explorer C
Nice going SWA, Who can we trust anymore? If you think about it, it's sad that we even need the FAA to watch out for our safety. What would SWA or others get away with if the FAA were not there??? Now FAA employees Bobby Bourtris and Douglas Peters have to enter the federal whistle blowers program because they chose to do the right thing? Hey Herb and Gary (Chairman/CEO SWA) is it really worth it to have our blood on your hands, for money? would you really enjoy your retirement if a plane had gone down due to maintenance violations? I will only fly my family on SWA when Herb and Gary step down in shame. It's one thing to defraud old ladies of their life savings like some spineless CEO's, but to play with my family's lives for money? SWA has lost it's way....... Former Customer, Cary Il.
Randy4
Explorer C
Southwest's apparently disregard for human life for no other reason than profit is inexcuseable and they must be made an example of. I personally will never fly on Southwest airlins again. I would like to see prison terms for all of those in management involved in this murderous episode. Shame on you! May your curse be to fly on those same unsafe airplanes that you would allow to fly passengers on.
Katie1
Explorer C
http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/04/02/southwest.faa.inspection/index.html I am sad to say that even though I have a flight booked on Southwest in April, I will be cancelling it and booking on a different airline. I know that I will forfeit some money, but I don't know who to trust here and I don't feel like dealing with the stress of wondering.
John_Theriault
Explorer C
I fly Southwest twice weekly and nearly always have a very positive experience. From gate to plane, the crews are professional, customer focused, and friendly. However, as a frequent flyer, I am very concerned by these potential safety issues. I would like a letter sent to all frequent flyers detailing what specific steps you have and will take to ensure current and future passenger safety. We are owed this as customers who spend thousands on your airline annually. The testimony and public relations campaign are not enough Ã
blusk
Aviator C
John, If you go to the press release that I linked above and then click on the attachments link in the release, it will have part of Herb and Gary's written testimony. Also, if the Committee staff follow their usual pattern for this hearing, the full written testimony will be posted on the Committee's web site under hearings. Scroll down and click on the witnesses' name for the written testimony. You can also watch the oral testimony on the site. Brian
WIlliam_Neuhoff
Explorer C
When I called you guys a few weeks back I was bereated by the person from customer relations. She said the the SWA people were fired which is not the case, and that I was over reacting. She also said that the 10.2 million was under protest and would be waived in her estimation. Saftey is NOT an issue with Southwest. It starts with the cabin crew making snide remarks during their safety presentation on board, to the carelessness of the boarding agents leaving doors open with no regard to who is walking down the ramp to the plane when the agents are "missing in action." I am sick of people being thrown off planes because they wear the wrong shirts or their skirts are too short!! Look around SWA your passenger's safety is at play and your culture does not care. CEO on down should be fired right now.
Elle
Explorer C
I will never fly your airline again. How dare you try and circumvent rules and regulations that exist for a reason? How dare you put the lives of so many people -- me included -- at risk? How dare you threaten the brave individuals who came forward and reported your behavior? Do not insult my intelligence with your "safety was never compromised" schtick. I have a terminal degree in the sciences, and I *know* that's not true. Saftey was compromised and you know it. You've lied and you've cheated. You are unworthy of my business.
Chuck
Explorer C
I have been watching the testimonies all morning now...the "good ole boy" system that encompasses the muckety-mucks at Southwest Airlines has clearly spilled over to include relationships with the FAA inspectors. "Dysfunctional" has been the word used the most so far in the hearings. "Cozy relationship" and "wink-wink, nod" have also been tossed around quite a bit. How disheartening. Also of note is the lack of maintenence recordkeeping on the part of Southwest. Certainly, the district mangers for the FAA are also to blame- but for a Company whose "motto" is "The Golden Rule", and "Doing the Right Thing"...this is looking pretty bad. The fact that Southwest Airlines seems to have hand-picked their own inspectors and, apparently, gotten rid of them via the FAA managers if they were to find anything wrong with SWA's MX practices. And when asked if this was a "widespread problem including other carriers", the answer was "no, it was a unique situation at Southwest". Again- kudos for having the guts to include all of this on your blog. Honestly, if it were up to me, I would remove this thread. It's not going well AT ALL for Southwest in this hearing. If the media gives this hearing as much attention as it did with the initial story, the fallout could be catastorphic...couple that with ATA declaring bankruptcy and closing its doors...the price of LUV will plummet.
T_Olson
Explorer C
As a business traveler in the 90s, I did whatever I could to avoid flying SWA, even for short-haul flights (e.g. LAX to OAK), preferring to fly the majors. But your on-time records, extensive number of flights, and easy access through regional airports eventually won me over. By the mid-90s, I completely altered my airline preferences and traveled extensively on your airline, accumulating numerous free flights through your rewards program. Your immoral and cavalier attitude towards passenger safety shattered that loyalty in 5 minutes -- the time it took to read the devious and underhanded maneuvers your corporation from the highest executive levels to thwart standard safety protocol. I will no longer fly SWA for any flight - for any reason. I am forwarding the article to all of my business colleagues and friends who are currently SWA enthusiasts to persuade them in choosing other airlines as well. You have a daunting challenge ahead to win back passenger loyalty. You may buy back the budget-conscious travelers with your famous low fare specials. But you're going to need unprecedented mea culpas and other efforts to win back your business travelers -- travelers whose families depend upon their livelihood and mortality -- travelers who cannot and will not gamble with their lives for cheap fares. Sincerely, T. Olson
Mike
Explorer C
By knowingly putting people at risk you are equivalent to low life murders.
Lindbergh
Explorer C
I have been watching the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee's hearing on airline safety and oversight. All I can say is, "SHAME ON YOU, SWA." Every employee of SWA should be embarrassed to be a part of this company.
Debbie5
Explorer C
I do not appreciate Southwest knowingly putting my life at risk in order to save a buck. I won't be flying Southwest again.
John311
Explorer C
An announcenment to: Herb, Colleen and the other management sleaze balls that make up your team: "You are now free to move about your jail cells."
Dave_Erichson
Explorer C
The nerve of Southwest and the FAA is shocking. To compromise the safety of your customers for your profit margin is disgusting.
Dr__Jane_Conron
Explorer C
I can not fathom the decision making that Southwest engaged when it decided to fly planes that were not properly inspected. I have flown my last Southwest flight.
Mark
Explorer C
I guess all of you who are cancelling SWA flights have not been watching the news lately! YOUR airline has problems as well!
KS3
Explorer C
Shame on you Southwest. How DARE you jeopardize the saftety of millions of people just so you can be thought of as the most "on-time" airline? How DARE you? People trusted you and put their lives in your hands assuming that you valued those lives. I have an upcoming flight on your airline, one that is too late for me to cancel and make new arrangements. But I will not be flying SWA again. How DARE you? And rest assured, had one of these uninspected airplanes gone down, you would have started blaming and pointing fingers and trying to take down any entity you could to avert the consequences of your GREEDY actions. How DARE you? Maybe when you get some time you should read your "Safety Commitment"
danwebb
Explorer C
I think the fact that SWA is allowing comments like "By knowingly putting people at risk you are equivalent to low life murders" to be posted says a lot. My two cents.
Patrick_Spear
Explorer C
I am appalled and disgusted. For years, Southwest has positioned itself as the "Luv" airline, and the irreverant "were not like everyone else" alternative to the other guys. Now, it seems, you're just like everyone else. You cut corners, put your passengers at risk, and engage in improper, unethical behavior. Your marketing team and ad agency must be working overtime spinning this one. Herb Kelleher's chain-smoking must be on overdrive right now. And what about Gary Kelly? And Colleen Barrett? Forget the folksy ruminations, and the claims that Gary loves freight. What Gary loves is hardball tactics and bending the rules. Like Gary, I'm the CEO of a company, and if we did what Southwest did, I'd expect to lose my job, and rightfully so. I'll keep flying the airline, because of where I live, but don't think I respect the organization like I once did, and I'm fairly certain the damage is permanent. Tell me how you're going to prove me wrong.
Emma_Sloan
Explorer C
I live in Raleigh and have always used SW for my partner and I when we make our trips to Orlando. She would rather drive or take the train, but the low cost and the 2 hour by SW versus 10 hours by car was a deciding factor. But having just purchased 2 roundtrip tickets for May, and her watching the hearings, I'll have to cancel the tickets because she refuses to get on a SW flight. We've been together for 35 years and a fight over using SW is just not worth it, so I'm taking an extra couple days vacation time and we'll be driving. Thanks SouthWest for insulting a regular customer with your lies about maintenance. Of course if SW had just fixed everything I would have reconsidered, but their trying to get the FAA inspectors fired is unexcuseable. -Emma,
Paul_Gherman1
Explorer C
No Santa Clause, no Easter Bunny, no SouthWest as we all imagined it. Hope you lose a bundle. From one of your customer who only flew SW whenever he could. No more.
LaToshaDC
Explorer C
I find it ironic that I purchased tickets for my first trip using Southwest just before the news broke of your blatant disregard for your customersÃ
Andrew_in_Orlan1
Explorer C
Just booked 8 round trips in July. Booking more tomorrow. Southwest will make it through this rough time. You guys are awesome. Tell your staff to hang in there.
David_Culbertso
Explorer C
The quote of the day, from the Southwest CEO: "Regulatory non-compliance and being unsafe are two different things." Unbelievable. I just flew SW last week and told my wife that you'd put the safety issues behind you.
Chuck
Explorer C
Okay- it's now 6:35 and I am glued to my computer screen. Herb and Gary have testified. I can say this: If Bill O'Reilly wanted these two on his show, it would have to be re-labled "Spin Zone"... I was truly looking forward to Herb "cutseying" his way out of this- but he has lost his touch. Between the constant hacking and ill-timed, patronizing jokes about the whole situation, he has not helped one bit. Herb actually stated that "only a small part of the aircraft was not inspected- just a little piece...". That's reassuring- and he was called on it immediately. Gary Kelly...a numbers man, no doubt. Nice guy, indeed. But a numbers man...first and foremost. When asked if SWA MX officials "pressured" FAA inspectors to not report the findings, he could not give a straight answer. Now we are starting every sentence with "To my recollection..." and "I don't recall..." as if we are in a pseudo-Alberto Gonzalez hearing. Sad day, indeed.
Patrick111
Explorer C
So Southwest screwed up a little. I'm sure the other airlines did a lot worse. I'll keep flying Southwest, they still have the best safety record and service.
David12
Explorer C
Yes, there was a lack of communication pertaining to the Airworthiness Directive but anyone who knows anything about aircraft knows that though SWA flew those planes past the date stated on the AD, it wasn't in any danger since it hadn't surpassed the year and a half given until the airplane was in danger. What people don't remember are the multiple catastrophic accidents that the other airlines (United, American, Delta, Northwest, AirTran/ValuJet) while Southwest's record remains spotless. Those who claim that they will never fly Southwest are only kidding themselves because everyone know that people aren't going to spend $500.00 to fly from Florida to Washington when you can fly Southwest for $200.00 ad have a better chance to be ontime. As far as jeopardizing the safety of the American public, what about every single person out their that talks on their cellphone while driving or the times when you all had a drink or two and you claimed you were OK to drive home? So basically everyone claiming that they are shocked and distrubed by the "FACT" that Southwest knowlingly put everyones lives in danger, you are all complete idiots!! If they were so unsafe than why doesn't there record show dozens of fatal accidents like al the other airlines. Enjoy flying the friendly skies, for those of you claiming they will never fly Southwest, in a 25 year old DC-8 or some POS that has its maintenance done in some shack down in Honduras.
Chuck
Explorer C
UMMMM- DeFazio just referred to the "good old days and Frank Lorenzo"...any ex-Eastern folks wanna weigh in on that?
J__Farinas
Explorer C
Shame on you Southwest Airlines. Your behaviors do not align with your marketing. I hope that your stock drops like a rock thereby causing stockholders to insist that heads roll. Don't even try to spin it as an FAA problem - just because they have their own problems does not get you off the hook.
Deborah2
Explorer C
I believed in SWA. Believed it was a company trying to do business differently. Believed that SWA really cared about its customers. Obviously I was wrong. Even if it's only a few "rotten apples" in the barrel, it reflects on the entire company. I believed so much in you that I saved my $ to buy stock. I bought - not to make lots of money - but because I wanted to invest in SWA's values, principles, ways of doing business. But you've demonstrated that you're not worthy of our trust and support. The way that you've endangered the public - your customers - is shameful. And the worse of it is the apparent attempts by SWA to get certain diligent and repsonsible FAA staff fired or moved from their jobs. BTW, I sold all my SWA stock. Not because I was worried about further stock losses but because owning your stock turned my stomach.
Tiffany1
Explorer C
Is SWA going to do any kind or reimbursement for passengers who have flights in the next upcoming weeks. We're going to FL. and I do not feel comfortable whatsoever. The airline said that I cannot get any kind of refund, not even a credit. What can I do.
Anne21
Explorer C
I WILL NEVER EVER FLY THIS AIRLINE AGAIN! I was always a frequent flier of yours ... there's no friggin way I will ever step on board Southwest's flying death traps. Shocking and unbelievable disregard for human lives. Not to mention threatening the lives of the whistleblowers who exposed your cozy deal with the FAA to skate through inspections. You are all crooks - every last one of you - and I hope this criminal enterprise goes out of business forever. I'M BOYCOTTING SOUTHWEST AND TELLING EVERYONE I KNOW TO DO THE SAME!!!
Jack3
Explorer C
I posted the first comment a while ago when this story broke and commented that I did not believe you. Looks like I was proven right. The first rule of managing a corporate crisis is getting all the bad news out at once so it doesn't dribble out and make you look untrustworthy. I'm sure there will be more after public and congressional pressure forces the FAA to complete truly independent investigations. Get in front of it, apologize completely and convincingly, provide full transparency and figure out how to capture the public's trust again. There, just saved you $100k in crisis consulting fees.
Jack10
Explorer C
I have two family members who have, in the past, been frequent SW customers due to business commitments. They now make other arrangements. How dare you bastards endanger the life of your passengers!! You and the government regulators who colluded with you to put off plane inspections deserve to burn in hell. I hope you all lose your jobs and the company goes bankrupt. I tell everyone I talk to not to fly Southwest Airlines.
JD6
Explorer C
I think most of you have overlooked the fact that it was SWA who brought to FAA's attention of what was discovered during one of it's "own" inspections back in March of 2007. When SWA reported the AD violation, FAA told SWA that it is "okay" to continue to fly these aircrafts while the inspections were being conducted. Now, the questions is, did SWA maliciously and intentionally flew these aircrafts unsafe? I doubt it. Their mistake was, and lesson learned, was to have not followed the FAA's recommendation to continue to fly these aircrafts and instead should have taken the initiative to ground them until all inspections were completed. As Mr Kelleher said, he apologized for making this mistake and it is one lesson that SWA's management have duly noted. I truly believe, that SWA has the safety of all it's passengers and employees in mind hence why all these are happening right now. If it weren't for their own "discovery" of these said "ADs" that were violated, where would we be now? The safety record of this company is "stellar" and proves that SAFETY is it's first priority and will always be!
lkd711
Explorer C
This is a very disappointing turn of events. I am completely surprised that Southwest appears to be one of the bad guys. (I thought that was American Airlines your long-time rivals.) The hiring of the former FAA inspector as a means to ease the inspections process is inexcusable. I don't care if everyone else does it, or whether someone said that it was okay either. I have worked in the corporate world for years and know how it works. This is clearly part of a Southwest 'strategy' to warp the inspection process and then to 'spin' its non-compliance by self-reporting after the fact. All to save some money. But, how much is this whole ordeal costing Southwest now, and who will have to pay the price??? It seems to me that it's time for Herb to retire as chairman of the board immediately. From his remarks today, he's out of touch with his customer and thinks that paying a fine should sweep matters under the rug. Others may have to go as well.
sally
Explorer C
I feel so betrayed by your company. I will go out of my way to not travel on SouthWest Airlines ever again, and I fly frequently. I realize that other airlines are likely guilty of compromising safety to save a buck, but I really thought SW was different. I used to defend SW when friends criticized the "bus in the air". Bye bye SW. I feel sorry for your employees.
Nicole10
Adventurer C
I once forgot to get my car inspected and drove around for a whole month out of legal compliance. I drove my friends around, went to work, etc..... Does that mean I put everyone's life at risk for my own convenience? Some of the accusations I've read (hello - murderers?) are just as ridiculous. The FAA is cracking down - and they should - on the compliance officers that failed to remediate this issue.
Doug5
Explorer C
As a frequent SWA passenger I am shocked and very disturbed at your actions or lack of actions. I have always promoted SWA to my friends and other business people, never again. How much money did you save? Did the Ã
FriendofBlogBoy
Frequent Flyer B
It is amazing to me to read the vitiolic and accusatory comments above which have come complete with insults like "murderers", since to my knowledge, there has been no loss of life associated with any alleged lapses on the part of Southwest in the area of inspections. Many of the people above seem to be parroting some of the initial knee-jerk reactions that were posted on this blog a few weeks ago before all of the facts had come out. Some of you who are suddenly so indignant might want to go back and review some of the earlier comments that address many of your complaints and accusations. For those who say that Southwest is not "owning up" to their mistakes, perhaps they skipped over some key parts of the video recording of today's hearings. A few statements you may have missed: Herb Kelleher: "I apologize to this committee -- we realize those planes should not have flown." HK: "...we should not have..." HK: "..we learned our lesson..." HK: "...these planes should have been on the ground." Gary Kelly: "There was clearly a mistake with our regulatory compliance." What I heard both of these gentlemen saying was that Southwest had made mistakes, but I also heard them explain some of the "bigger picture" that keeps getting overlooked or not reported. Herb and Gary were not trying to shirk responsibility by making sure that the problems were also partly the fault of the FAA and their procedures. When people who are critical of Southwest Airlines, which is unquestionably the SAFEST airline based on its history and number of passengers carried and miles flown, start saying that Southwest and its management needs to be more forthright, let me ask you a question. Have you noticed that since the beginning of this media frenzy, frequent and regular updates have been made on this blog? Have you noticed that there has been no censoring of comments (other than a few early ones that contained profanity) and that the accusers have had equal access to posting their opinions here as anyone else? Have you noticed that in the blog post above, they've provided us a weblink so we could listen to nine hours and 35 minutes' worth of video footage so that everyone could watch and hear what was said in Washington today? This company, and its management, is NOT hiding from this controversy, but is being very open in expressing the facts AND providing a forum for people who want to attack them. Have you seen similar responses from American, Delta and American Eagle in the last two weeks while they were grounding their planes for inspections that should have been done? Kim External Blog Boy
swaaddict
Explorer C
I'm appalled at the amount of "SWA Hate-mail" posts in this article. Southwest Airlines has always strived to be the safest airline out there, and I believe they still are. I still think at no point were any of those aircraft with the original cracks on them unsafe. This may be an old issue, but all this "Southwest isn't safe", and "Southwest has no regard towards safety," buisness has erupted from it. I would be really interested to see what the pilots have to say about this. Being someone who is currently earning a pilots license, I know that I would never jump in an airplane knowing that it might not bring me back safely. I'm sure the pilots at this company feel the same way. Loyal Southwest customer for life, Tucker
scottnearsmf
New Arrival
Earlier in the week, I made a post about whether Southwest's customer backed up their words with their actions (by not traveling during March) if you all look at the March traffic is seems that many of you are NOT backing up your words with your actions. Early May, we will see how you all did in backing up your words with your actions (by voting with your feet and wallet) when we see the April traffic report. For those of you who are saying that this airline should get in front of this and apologize and correct their procedures are simply not paying attention. Some of the corrective procedures include the hiring of third-parties to analyze their changes and this airline has issued mulitple apologies since March 7th. This airline is well aware that they have significant bridge building to get their MX procedures in order. However, Congressional hearings have never been the best place to get to all of the facts, historically. If we want to truly get to bottom of this, other fact finding forums need to be set up.
sparky
Explorer A
I am failing to see a real problem here. SWA gets nailed once for maintenance problems and gets rail roaded for doing for what every other airline has done... Self Disclosures... ALL Airlines have this to happen. I mean reall. These inspections are NOT that big of a deal, American just had some similiar issues.. and out of the news, United just anounced that it is redoing some inspections... Very little news. Quanta's (classified as the safest airline in the world, SWA is number 2 in the world, #1 in the US) just self disclosed that 55 airplanes had passenger Oxygen system serviced wiht Nitrogen... Nitrogen is deadly. You breath 100% Nitrogen at 30-50,000 feet and you are DEAD.. But NO NEWS. Why is SWA being singled out for their first offense, which is really not a safety issue here. I think that if we look deep enough that there is a political issue going on here. Maybe SWA stepped on a politicians toes some how... LOL, I would like to step on some of their toes actually. Every airline has this kind of problem... Why not pick on them. SWA self disclosed all of the above and now is being rail roaded because of it. I support SWA in what ever they do here, because I know that they will do the right thing to keep the Flying Public safe! We are all only human and we make mistakes.... I hope CNN is near some of these critizers here whey they make a mistake!
Julie18
Explorer C
Wow, are you people for real? Did you hear the same congressional hearing that I heard today? I'm a vacation flyer on Southwest. I've never blogged before and can't believe what I'm reading. I fly only Southwest because of their 30 plus year great safety record and their great, inexpensive flights. My family is able to take many much needed vacations and weekend getaways on Southwest and I will continue to fly them. Here's why, I heard the CEO and Chairman say that 1. Southwest has the best safety record in the industry, not to mention the best on time performance and absolute best customer service ranking. 2. They admitted they made a mistake when they told the FAA about missing two inspections out of 1100 pages of documents (you find me an airline that has never made a mistake) 3. they asked Boeing if the 43 airplanes were still safe to fly people...and Boeing said YES. 4. They asked the manager of the FAA if they could fly these airplanes for the 7 or 8 days that it would take to inspect them...and they said YES. If you have a reasonable amount of pure commen sense, why would you go to another airline, when Southwest has proved it has the best safety record? And, why go to another airline when other airlines recently grounded hundreds of airplanes when Southwest grounded 40 or so airplanes? I will continue to fly Southwest because of everything they offer and everything that they do right. After reading your posts calling these people "murderers" and you hope they "burn in h..." I'm actually blessed that I won't have to sit next to you on my next Southwest flight. Heaven forbid I actually put my tray table down too soon, you will probably condemn me too. Maybe you should try anger management or find a hobby???