Letters to the Editor
& the Continental Strike of
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.]
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.
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?
Robert J. Boser
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