Letters to the Editor

SUBJECT:  Deregulation & the Continental Strike of 1983
From: Anonymous

In response to the question posed:

"Did the Deregulation act of 1978  have an adverse affect on airline safety?" Deregulation

You wrote "Unions representing airline employees do that [grinding hidden axes] on a regular basis, so you have to be very careful about safety information that comes from a source like that.  Sometimes they do provide valuable contributions (like Alpo's [sic] submission to the NETS [sic] on the defects in the 737 rudder design), but many times they are deliberately distorting the truth to serve their own agenda."

Are you not serving your own agenda?

Continental Airlines employed me until the strike by AIM [mechanics/ground workers union] in 1983.  Some of the people who crossed the picket lines were upgraded from untrained, unskilled positions to mechanic positions with responsibilities far exceeding their skill levels.  Continental also hired replacement workers ahead of the strike.  They took people from any walk of life with very low levels of training, with virtually no experience and placed them in positions where highly competent and skilled personnel formerly worked.

The truth of the matter is that deregulation placed the lives of the flying public in the hands of untrained, unskilled personnel.  Whether you want to accept this fact is your option, but please print the truth, not just your opinion, whatever your "AGENDA" is.

[Editor’s note:  The writer refused, after two requests, to confirm he wrote this letter.  Therefore, his “truth” must necessarily be published without his name or E-mail address attached.]

 

EDITOR’S REPLY:

My statement was:

"…(like ALPA's submission to the NTSB on the defects in the 737 rudder design),"

If devotion to truth, constitutes an agenda, then you can say that my agenda is to expose deliberate falsehoods in regards to airline safety.  That is why I would not allow Capt. Harwood to get away with his adjustments to the findings of fact, by the NTSB, in the Valujet accident he mentioned in his letter. Valujet

As to the writer’s statement: The truth of the matter is that deregulation placed the lives of the flying public in the hands of untrained, unskilled personnel.  Whether you want to accept this fact is your option, but please print the truth, not just your opinion, whatever your "AGENDA" is.

I expressed my opinion and the writer is expressing his.  His belief is not the equivalent of fact.  If he has factual data, to prove his claims of unqualified employees now running the airline show, as opposed to what existed before deregulation, then by all means I urge him to send it to AirlineSafety.Com.  And, he might also send along data that explains why the overall accident rate has continued to decline since 1978, despite skilled employees being replaced with unskilled ones -- if that is factual.

QUESTION:

If Deregulation resulted in unskilled employees replacing skilled, but the accident rate continued its downward trend, would it be fair to infer that unskilled employees do a better job?

June, 2000

Robert J. Boser    
Editor-in-Chief 
AirlineSafety.Com

Return to the Letters to the Editor page.


HOME | UNIONS | FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS | WHAT'S NEW? | EDITORIALS | LETTERS TO THE EDITOR 

QUOTATIONS | AVIATION NEWS  | BOOK REVIEWS | SAFETY ARTICLES | LINKS | CONTACT US

All Material © 1997-2014  All rights are reserved. No part of this web site may be reproduced in any way without expressed written consent