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Southwest Airlines Continues Internal Audit

pberg
Not applicable
The following statement was just issued regarding Southwest Airline's continued internal maintenance audit.  SOUTHWEST AIRLINES CONTINUES INTERNAL INVESTIGATION AND AUDIT Airline Makes the Decision to Temporarily Remove 38 Aircraft from Scheduled Service DALLAS - March 12, 2008 - Yesterday, Southwest Airlines CEO Gary Kelly said the airline is taking action on preliminary findings of its own internal investigation into allegations that it violated FAA regulations in March 2007. Kelly vowed to make any changes necessary to ensure that the airline is in full compliance with FAA Airworthiness Directives and all of its own maintenance programs, policies, and procedures.  During last night's review by Southwest of its maintenance records, the airline discovered an ambiguity related to required testing. Southwest made the decision to take a conservative approach and remove aircraft out of scheduled service. Southwest immediately began reinspecting those aircraft. A total of 44 aircraft were affected-one was already retired, five were in maintenance for scheduled checks, and the remaining 38 were removed from scheduled service. Southwest's decision to remove aircraft from service resulted in approximately four percent of today's Southwest flights being canceled. Due to good weather conditions, the decision caused minimal schedule disruptions and the airline is running more than 90 percent ontime. A portion of the aircraft have been inspected, cleared, and returned to service. The airline expects to have all of these aircraft inspected by early this evening. The ongoing internal review of Southwest's maintenance programs, policies, and procedures could potentially create other operational changes if the airline needs to swap or reroute aircraft as the internal investigation and audit unfolds. "Again, we are mindful that during Southwest's 37-year proud history, we have safely transported the population of the United States-every man, woman, and child-four and a half times over. This is a fact. We have been a safe Company. I believe we are a safe Company. I am committed to making sure we become safer still," said Southwest CEO Gary Kelly.
90 Comments
Ed6
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Anotherview: You insist on a reliance upon facts, but you state flatly that 99% of FAA-mandated inspections were performed properly. How do you know? Please explain why 8% (44 of 525, give or take) of the fleet was grounded, if SWA was 99% compliant.
A_Long_Winded_O
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It really disheartens me to see people run with sensationalized speculation instead of facts. People call for Southwest to "do the right thing." Southwest did the right thing when they discovered the error by reporting it to the FAA. Southwest did the right thing when they consulted with both Boeing and the FAA on what to do to rectify the situation. And Southwest did the right thing by completing the repairs in accordance to the plan put together by Boeing and the FAA. If there was any call for those aircraft to be grounded, that was the FAA's to make, and the fact that they didn't shouldn't be blame put on Southwest, but blame put on the FAA. They did not try to cover anything up - they SELF-REPORTED the issue. If they were going to cover it up, they wouldn't not have self-reported, and pretended that everything was A-OK with the FAA none the wiser. The case was closed a year ago, until the recently under fire FAA decided that they really didn't like how they handled the situation, and slapped Southwest with the fine. Because Southwest tried to do the right thing, they're being punished. What do you think other airlines are going to do if they find a problem with their maintenance logs? Report it to the FAA? Well, considering what Southwest is going through now because it was maintaining it's integrity and being honest (and self auditing, I might add), I HIGHLY doubt any other carrier is going to want to self-disclose... The other 46 aircraft that were reinspected yesterday were pulled from service by Southwest erring on the side of caution in light of this media scare frenzy, not the FAA, and were NOT the aircraft that were affected a year ago. Southwest has been taking a proactive approach to this situation by continually trying to do the right thing: Hiring an outside firm to conduct an internal investigation into the matter. Sending Gary Kelly himself to do interviews instead of someone in Public Relations. Keeping the public updated on the situation with numerous press releases all posted on southwest.com. Even keeping all the negative comments in this corporate blog. Bravo Southwest. I don't think many other corporations in America would have the stones to allow such free discussion. There is no basis that Southwest gets "special treatment" from the FAA without looking at all the relationships between the FAA advisers and other carriers. It's easy to attack the "good guy" in an industry that's fallen on hard times and notorious for delivering a miserable customer service experience. I think the media needs to clarify exactly what a crack in the skin of the fuselage is. I'm getting the feeling that people think these aircraft had huge holes in the side of them with air and light seeping through, and that's just not the case at all. All aircraft are subject to cracking. These planes did not pose a safety risk. Southwest would not jeopardize the lives of their passengers OR their Employees. If you know ANYTHING about the culture of Southwest at all, it's that PEOPLE are important, and everyone is considered family. I keep reading comments like "this would never have happened on Herb or Colleen's watch," in an attempt to attack the integrity of Gary Kelly. Herb (Chairman of the Board) and Colleen (President of Southwest) are still VERY much a part of Southwest. They trust Gary, and know that he's capable of handling the situation and getting to the bottom of this. I applaud Southwest's efforts to keep the public informed on all the latest developments in this case. If Southwest were the "greedy corporation" people seemingly want to make them out to be, then they wouldn't waste the time or money notifying the public of any new information. Southwest hasn't maintained an impressive 37 year safety record on sheer luck. Their history is proof that Safety is their top priority, and I have full confidence that whatever the case may be with this unfortunate "media field day," Southwest will certainly do whatever is necessary to maintain that. Don't lose confidence in Southwest. They have spent 37 yeas building a reputation on honesty and integrity - a reputation like that in the airline industry is truly hard to achieve, and it isn't something they earned overnight. I will always fly Southwest as my first choice, despite living in Dallas and having the option to fly American to more places nonstop. I know Southwest will get me where I need to go safely, on-time, and deliver that award winning Texas charm they're so famous for.
doncie
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Reinspections Complete; Normal Launch of Operations this Morning Last night, we successfully completed reinspection of all aircraft that we had previously removed from scheduled service. Out of the 44 affected aircraft we told you about yesterday, only 38 aircraft were removed from service because five aircraft are in regularly scheduled heavy maintenance and one is retired. Of the 38 aircraft, 34 were cleared and put back into the schedule by early this morning. Four of those aircraft were held for surface repairs, and we expect to have them back in service by the weekend. Thanks to the efforts of ALL Employees who worked tirelessly to complete these reinspections overnight, we had a normal launch of operations this morning. I hope this post helps relieve some of ya'lls fears. Thank you for Flying Southwest Airlines.
Anonymous4371
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Ed, Here's my reasoning based on the facts at hand. At the point Southwest disclosed the problem caused by a typo in a document, they were inspecting 99+% of the surface area in question, as required by the Airworthiness Directive. The typo caused them to miss <1% of that surface area. Neither the FAA documents surrounding the proposed penalty, nor any other official documents I am aware of, question that that was the case. All the furor is about the timing of what happened after the self-disclosure. That is ... Southwest, with the approval of the FAA and the guidance of Boeing, implementing a 10-day plan to re-inspect the aircraft, which they actually completed in eight days. I believe the number of aircraft involved in the original self-disclosure was 46, so the surface area of those 46 aircraft had missed less than 1% of the inspection due to the documentation error that was self-disclosed. And as I said before, nothing that was found in those re-inspections posed a safety risk ... unless you want to argue with the aircraft manufacturer. If I didn't believe Southwest was the safest airline in the US, would I be flying four times on Southwest next week? I think not!
Karen_K
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I have been a loyal Southwest Flyer for 28 years. I feel as if I have grown up with this airline. I am deeply distressed with the recent reports regarding a possible cover up regarding the care of their planes. I am hopeful that Southwest Airlines will resolve this matter soon.
Wylie_H_
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Obviously, safety is very important... but the more a read the details on this incident, it sounds like a hyper-technical rules violation rather than anything which compromised safety. The fact that Rep. Oberstar is so out front and center on this thing, leading the charge against Southwest, made the cynic in me suspect that something more was afoot. As a result, I pulled a list of Rep. Oberstar's largest financial backers. Guess what: Northwest Airlines and American Airlines rank as some of his biggest financial contributors, whereas Southwest is nowhere to be seen. I certainly hope that the FAA isn't becoming politicized.
SWALUVER
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Wylie...Amen! That's what I have been thinking since day 1. Oberstar & Northwest definitely a connection. I didn't even think of American...good call! GO SWA!!!!!! Is Oberstar to Comfy with Northwest???? HMMMM!!!
Anon4
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Speaking of Oberstar, I don't know if he was on the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee back in 2005, but there was a "whistleblower" complaint against Northwest Airlines regarding far, far more serious issues than what happened at Southwest. I don't remember Northwest being dragged through the mud and called before Congress. Oberstar didn't become Chairman of the Committee until 2007, but one has to wonder if "hometown influence" didn't keep Northwest out of the news back in '05. http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/08_06/b4070000689813.htm?chan=rss_topDiscussed_ssi_5
Sam13
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I am amazed at the misinformation out there and the hysteria on this issue.People need to realize that Southwest (obviously, they work closely with Boeing as the largest owner of 737 aircraft)has been very open regarding the issues at hand, and not attempted to hide anything.Just because "sources say" and " a confidential source said" does not mean it is true.I have no hesitation in putting my family or myself on any Southwest flight now as I have many times.Those not knowledgeable about aviation and aircraft do not fully understand the procedures in question.A little research will show that other airlines have done much worse regarding maintenance issues and Southwest took action when they needed to.This is an election year also for most, and therefore the grandstanding by some politicians without having all the facts!(not to mention some with hidden agendas against Southwest also)as well as negative national media regarding any airline issue as they attack first and then get the facts.
SWALUVER
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write james oberstar in minnesota...he is 8th district rep. this really pisses me off that this is politically motivated...why hasn't the press caught on to this???? Perhaps it wouldn't make ratings like Spitzer?
Anonymous4371
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Anon, According to Wikipedia, "[Oberstar] has served on the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee since his first term." His first term began on January 3, 1975.
Meredith
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Shame, shame - all that $ made on the very people they placed at risk - Loyal SWA Customers. Colleen - look forward to your article on this during my next SWA flight.
Barry_Dawson
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Very interesting situation! When I was sent the information it included the following statement "Southwest Airlines has never had a catastrophic crash." Have people forgotten about flight 1455 on March 5, 2000 at Burbank, California when a Southwest 737 overran the runway on landing. The Captain failed to Ã
Anon4
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AnotherView, thanks! I knew he had to be a longtime member of the committee. You don't become Chairman from the outside. I do think this is a politically motivated action and that the non-action against Northwest in 2005 was a result of "coziness" between a politician and hometown contributor. At least the Northwest issues were (very) briefly mentioned in today's DMN.
Anonymous987
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>>I am an Aviation Safety and Human Factors Specialist working in Europe. Behaviour like this and the failure to follow mandatory checks hardly warrants an airline being considered safe! If you're truly the safety professional that you say you are, certainly you realize that absolute fallacy of such a statement that takes an isolated event(s) and tries to project them on an entire group. That kind of comment is something someone might expect from someone with a non-aviation background or someone in the media, but an aviation safety specialist? Pluh-eze... Safety *isn't* a functional outcome--it's a process and state-of-mind. It's clear that, like all airlines out there, Southwest has experienced both incidents and the far less frequent accident over the course of the years. I can't imagine Southwest not having "learned something" from its BUR and MDW accidents, and used that information in the training processes to prevent recurrences. That said, it has to be recognized that the system runs with human beings involved, and as long as they are, mistakes are still possible. The secret is to keep any mistakes small, recoverable, and non-hazardous, and I think Southwest's record of only a single hull loss (BUR, aircraft damaged beyond economical repair), and single non-passenger fatality (MDW) indicate that Southwest has been doing more "right" that many "experts" are giving them credit for. Part of the reason that doesn't happen is the media, and how their reporting (or lack thereof in some cases) confuses the public and otherwise leads to some erroneous conclusions. For example, say an airworthiness directive (AD) is issued by FAA, mandating inspections that consist of 100 different tasks. For whatever reason(s), the airline goofs-up and only gets 97 of the 100 tasks actually done, and it's discovered later. The media then reports "The aircraft missed required inspections" which can erroneously lead viewers to conclude that *no* inspections were conducted. That's no excuse for an airline having missed the 3 tasks that it did that made the aircraft technically "unairworthy", but wouldn't the public have been better-served by knowing that the majority (97 of 100) of tasks were accomplished properly? In their quest to "simplify" things for the general public, the media often "dumb down" information so much that any meaningful context is lost. Add that to the public's tendency to readily believe any mistakes are a result of deliberate actions ("Why, they *must* be doing it to save money") and that aircraft fuselages are eggshells and *any* crack means "certain doom" like they've come to "expect" via movies and TV, well, it's no wonder that some folks are scared snotless. The truth be known, they have little reason to be. Maybe, someday, the public will come to demand more from the media, but until then, the media will tend to confuse more than it informs.
Lynn_Peterson
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How sad that greedy airlines, including Southwest, don't see a problem with outsourcing repairs on their planes. This compromises everyone's safety, and takes more jobs out of this country. Many of the tech's aren't certified, and you have to wonder about security issues in these other countries. After 9-11 people were worried about flying. This certainly isn't helping build confidence.
Jill_Metzger
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Sorry, Southwest has lost my companies business. No need to risk anyones life. We too will speak with our dollars. If you want to take the risk, go for it, just don't ask the rest of the flying public to pay for your risk taking.
Barry_Dawson
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Reply to CharlieWest219 I looked at this lack of mandatory inspections as being yet another law in a system. You must agree it is - whether you like it or not. That said of course one needs to look deeper into the system and the WHY that allowed such a failure to occur! The main purpose that I posted a reply was of the statement Ã
Anonymous987
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No need to recommend nything, as I'm already quite familar with Dr. Helmreich's work, and that of Prof. Reason's too. >>>The main purpose that I posted a reply was of the statement Ã
Barry_Dawson
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Reply again for CharlieWest219 You say that the main point of posting your reply was because of the statement Ã
Anonymous987
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>>>Maybe if the poor child who was killed in the accident had been your own, what would your feelings have been then? What a cheap emotional shot, and how incredibly insenstive of a human factors specialist to even ask. I'd never even think about asking about 111, or any other crash in the last 50 years. The fact that you continue to reject the other poster's common sense use of the word "catastrophic" suggests that maybe you have another agenda to advance, or axe to grind. I don't know what, if anything, it is, nor do I care, but there does seem to be a certain lack of objectivity on your part. All airlines are run by humans, and humans sometimes make mistakes, so does that mean all airlines are "unsafe"? I'm unable to debate the semantics of "catastrophic" further, since my son has just advised me that the oven timer just went off and dinner is about to be catastrophically unedible if I don't intercede.
Anonymous987
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An excellent article: http://www.star-telegram.com/226/story/530246.html
Barry_Dawson
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Dear CharlieWest219, What a pity you need to criticize the person and not stick to the interesting points in the discussion. Great, mentality - perhaps you even work for Southwest!!!!!
LItoFL
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Unfortunately there is little room for error with airplanes....just like space shuttles. One "little human error" can be disastrous! We put our lives in the hands of the airlines and their pilots every day and expect no less than 100% compliance with the safety regulations. There is no excuse for oversight, and there is no excuse for the spin the airline puts on their explanation of the oversights. Who can we believe?
Nicole10
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And I was crushed when I couldn't get an interview for the Inernal Audit department.....shoulda hired me, SWA!
ChillDude
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One question to all of you here...you put all of your own lives in your hands every day behind the wheel if you own a car. Now tell me one thing: Do each and every one of you make sure your vehicle is 100% perfectly maintained at every manufacturer-specified maintenance interval? I'm sure you're on the phone to your dealership just before you cross that mileage point! Do you fill your tires with air at every gas station fill-up, and make sure the oil is completely topped off? Do you get the windshield replaced when there is a any tiny crack in it on the driver's side? Do you vaccuum your car every day after you track mud and debris into it? Yeah...didn't think so. Southwest Airlines has over 500 planes and yeah they are carrying people and they are a business. They have a responsibility to make sure they do all those things on time. But look at their history...NO fatal accidents involving passengers. They are a SAFE airline. Somebody screwed up royally, and SWA will fix it. When you step on SWA you step onto the safest airline in America. NO other carrier has SWA's safety record. Think about that the next time you book on AA or DL or UA or NW or AK or FL or any other airline...most if not ALL have had a fatal accident in their history. And I am sure that NONE of them made it 37+ years without having one. So chew on that while you forget to check your oil at your next fill-up at the gas station.
Anon4
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LltoFL, I don't think you know much about airplanes. Planes are over-engineered so that a single minor human error doesn't bring down a flight. If you look at many of the major crashes of recent history, the crash wasn't usually due to a single mistake. There was usually a cascade of mistakes that culminated in the plane going down. If planes weren't built this way you'd have planes falling out of the sky on a weekly or even daily basis. In addition, airlines have overlapping inspection programs so that, in SW's case, the "missed" FAA mandated inspection wasn't really "missed" at all. It was "missed" in terms of the paperwork, but other, overlapping Southwest maintenance programs ensured that this area of the plane had eyes, ears and tools all over it. The way it is reported makes it sound like these planes were just flyin' around all over the place with no one checking them out - totally not true. And sorry, planes have cracks in them all the time, it is routine, that's why they have programs in place to deal with the problem. It's simply routine wear and tear on the airplane like wear on your auto brakes and tires.
Anonymous987
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>>>What a pity you need to criticize the person and not stick to the interesting points in the discussion. Just like you did. I see it got your attention. I think we're just have to going to agree to disagree here. As I said before, I'll wait until FAA's and Southwest's respective investigations have concluded before I can assess whether the missed inspections were intentional and profit-motivated, which I doubt. As a human factors specialist, I'm sure the old addage "Never attribute to malice that which can adequately be explained by stupidity" rings a bell with you, and "stupidity" can be easily replaced by other terms while still keping the overall statement accurate. Like everyone, we'll all just to wait and see. Sorry about your lost training gig--best of luck in your future endeavors.
Chad_Martin
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Southwest Airline's continued disregard for passenger safety should have resulted in the maximum allowable penalty of $36M. We no longer trust SWA and will not permit any of our employees to book company travel on SWA. Sorry SWA, We LUV life more!
Anon4
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Mr. Martin, I hope that time, distance and more information becoming available to the public in the coming weeks will give you more perspective about what happened with this incident. Southwest does not "disregard passenger safety", ever. I wish you the best of luck flying on other airlines, but I can assure you that similar and perhaps even more serious problems exist at other airlines. I wonder if the FAA intends to give all the airlines' maintenance records the "Southwest treatment"? Seems unfair that only one airline is being given this sort of unprecedented scrutiny...
myturn
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Let's see how those "safe" airlines you all are switching to fair from the announcement today that the FAA will be checking all domestic airlines paperwork. At least SWA came forward and let them know they missed an inspection, albeit not something that was critical to the safety of it's passengers.
scottnearsmf
New Arrival
To those of you that are switching, EVEN WITH THE REVELATIONS SINCE MARCH 6TH in mind, I would look for bigger safety issues with the other carriers outside Southwest. It's the FAA that's drop the ball.
scottnearsmf
New Arrival
With that said, I hope that aircraft with original delivery dates prior to 1989 should be placed on an expedited, gradual retirement program. And if some of the specials are on the list. N334SW (Shamu I) is with a May 22nd 1988 delivery date. All of the others are younger. Hopefully an upcoming delivery will come in Shamu colors so that 334 will get retired gracefully soon.
Dennis3
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This will only make it safer.
Leslie4
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i think SWA are doing the best they could to retrieve all the aircraft efficiently. it is scary to know that something like this happened and it is hard for us to trust that the planes will be in good condition for flights. however, SWA doesnt have any fatal accidents (not to jinx it) but other airlines have had accidents but people still get on their airlines SWA are doing the best they could to protect and assure us a safe flight.
flyer1234
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All the rhetoric aside,, every company has its problems. Employees can be lazy and not understand that failure to do thier jobs completely can leave a huge hole in a well crafted puzzle. I trust that a company of 37 years knows where and how this occured. Their processes must be well groved after all these years and it must be easy to track where the failure started. Hence the firings. It may not seem like much to everyone, but the "root" started somewhere. I am sure those three employees know exactly what kind of issue they created and how it affects the company now. Be sure of this too,, the other employees do too. I don't think that SWA will allow this kind of behavior from any other employee again, given all the negative publicity and speculation about their devotion to safety. In addition,, after reading these blogs,, they are losing customers too. You may say that they don't care,, but these blogs are just a minute representation of the country as a whole. For every company publicly stating they are pulling out,, there must be thousands more that are doing it quietly. Not to mention the "fearful" everyday traveler. I am still going to fly SWA every 6 weeks like I always do. Knowing that thier inspections are under scrutiny just makes me think they are going to be even more diligent about the condition of the planes. I like thier new boarding process, convenient schedules and destinations. I would like to say that I have seen a rapid decline in the attitude of the employees lately. I would like to see better attitudes from all of them... What I get is the feeling that "yea this is a cheap flight, so you need us more than we need you" I hope thats not true, but its been going on for at least the last 6 months. I had one such horrible flight with the rudest attendant,, that I almost stopped flying SWA. My husband convinced me that she was probably having a bad day, and she treated HIM badly, not me. I have a few friends that work for SWA and they say if you make a complaint, no one really does anything anyway and they somehow "single" you out later. I don't know if they are telling the truth or not. I try not to be that gullable. Anyway SWA,,, unless you continue to have safety issues, I will still be flying. Try and get the attidues in check.. Thanks
FriendofBlogBoy
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To CharlieWest219 and my fellow supporters of SWA -- Thank you for your well-reasoned and intelligent comments regarding this current situation. As you have pointed out, and as many of the negative blog entries have verified by their tone, this has become an issue of emotions more than one of facts. There is no question that much of the media relies on hype and sensationalism when they feel that it will serve their agenda, and that when mistakes made are egregious enough, they will print a retraction of the incorrect front page headline back on page 37. Right here in the hometown of Southwest, now that the damage has been done, the local paper has moved on to newer and other things to rail about. How easy it is to fire up a controversy and then just move on to another issue. Responsible reporting carries an obligation to get the facts right up front and then to keep your audience informed as the story continues to unfold. As several bloggers have pointed out, Southwest Airlines, like every other company, is made up of people, and people make mistakes. It seems valid to examine whether incidents occur because of premeditated actions and shortcuts or because of unintended human errors. To make accusations of purposeful efforts to avoid costly inspections and secret agendas to knowingly put people's lives at risk is irresponsible at best and intensely paranoid at worst. Thanks to movie moguls like Oliver Stone, many folks have been encouraged to look for a conspiracy behind every incident. In addition, you and others have correctly mentioned the inherent and redundant safety of today's airframes. The planes of today's fleets, and I believe Southwest's specifically, are some of the best maintained and inspected pieces of equipment in the air. It remains a very accurate statement to say that you are at much greater risk driving to the airport than you are flying. Many people outside the aviation industry try to raise the spectre of average age of the fleet for an airline without understanding the amount of upgrades, repairs and ongoing work is done to keep those planes safe. If people maintained their cars as well as airlines maintain their airplanes, we could still be driving automobiles from 1970. In fact, during all of this hue and cry over airframe age, I don't see a similar concern for the members of our U. S. Air Force, who in some cases are flying planes that are over 40 or 50 years old. Our people in uniform are dealing with Congressional budget restraints that keep them in airframes that could be considered antiques compared to what Southwest has in the air. If you think some hairline cracks in a Boeing 737 are risky, consider the challenges of wings that are ready to fall off of some planes that entered the USAF fleet in the 1950s. All of this excitement over the Southwest situation is also being made towards a company with the best safety record around. As you said above, that is not meant to excuse or trivialize events such as the unfortunate death at MDW, but based on cycles flown, or numbers of passengers, or quantity of flight segments per day over the last 37 years, Southwest has nothing to be ashamed of. You notice that all of this criticism towards SWA is coming from emotional passengers who believe that in hindsight they might have died. There is no other airline that is willing to stand up and point any fingers at Southwest because they know that their records are worse, and that to do so would invite greater scrutiny into their own procedures, which may not have been as rigorous as Southwest's. The public has spent a lot of effort wailing and gnashing their teeth over Southwest and how something "could have happened", even though it didn't, but they fail to get equally emotional over crashes that DO happen. According to the lastest figures I can find just for the state of Texas, there were 170,190 alcohol-related car crashes in a year. That averages to 466 wrecks per day. In 2007, there were 1569 fatalities in Texas due to alcohol-related accidents. That would be equivalent to a fully-loaded Southwest 737 in the 137-pax configuration crashing with no survivors almost every month of the year (11.45 times to be precise). Where is the indignation over THAT? If all of these concerned and highly-principled travelers truly intend to boycott any airline that does not have a perfect maintenance record and that has never missed any deadlines or required work, then our interstate highways are going to become even more crowded than they already are, because they will not be able to fly again. Southwest is a great company run by excellent leaders who would not put the lives of their passengers, the lives of their employees or their public safety record at risk to save a few bucks. If you are looking around for a corporate culture of deceit, reckless disregard for safety and wanton evasion of legalities, you'd better look elsewhere. Southwest didn't become one of the most highly-desired places to work and a frequently-cited business model of success by being or doing what they are accused of by so many people. Thanks to CharlieWest219 and the others who understand that! Kim External Blog Boy
Cory_RN
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As a consumer, it's a game of roulette as to which airline will next be exposed as non-compliant with maintenance schedules. Face it, federal inspectors just donÃ
FriendofBlogBoy
Not applicable
As a smidgen of evidence that there may be a bit of a smear campaign being waged against Southwest Airlines, I'd like to offer the following tidbit for your contemplation. When questions about inspections began to surface, the "Southwest story" was FRONT PAGE news here in Dallas and a number of other cities. It made the TV news networks as well. So, out of curiosity, how many of you heard the story about American Eagle grounding 25 of their jets last week over questions about whether they had met some FAA-mandated inspection guidelines? The story seems similar to the one at SWA, except of course for the fact that the Southwest story was from last year, and the American Eagle one occurred last week. So, since it was old news, it needed to be trumpeted from the top of the front page. Recently, Southwest voluntarily grounded a portion of their fleet to insure compliance, and that, too, was front page fodder. Eagle did the same thing last week themselves, and to quote a portion of the article in the Dallas paper: "Federal Aviation Administration officials in Fort Worth raised the questions during an audit to ensure compliance with airworthiness directives, which address potential safety problems." Gee, I feel a sense of deja vu. But, I'm sure that in your town, it was as equally publicized as the situation involving Southwest Airlines, right? Let's see, where was in published in Dallas? On page 4 of the Business section. Counting the front page section, the Business portion is the fourth section. Four pages inside of the fourth section. Hmmmmm -- I guess the front page section was full... http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/dws/bus/stories/032508dnbuseagle.378381b.html Kim External Blog Boy
scottnearsmf
New Arrival
On Saturday March 29th, Southwest Flight 2836 which was scheduled to leave its gate at Love Field at 4:20 PM CDT left the runway at 4:30 PM CDT. 9 minutes later at 4:39 PM CDT, the 737-700 aircraft experienced an engine problem (with only one of its two engines), as it approached Denison, TX. Even though a Boeing 737 CAN fly safely on one engine, because the remaining engine does not have a backup it is procedure to turnaround, because it is the SAFE thing to do. However, I hope that Southwest goes ahead and takes the opportunity to do a full inspection before returning this aircraft back to service and any other aircraft that should experience this problem as well. All data provided is available on Flightaware.com. There isn't a reason for Southwest won't be able to reform its maintance procedures and put this behind them.