Seattle, United States:
Members of the Airplane Manufacturing Pilots Association (AMPA) have unanimously voted ‘No Confidence’ in their management at The Boeing Company’s Training & Flight Services.
A bargaining unit of the Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace (SPEEA), IFPTE Local 2001, AMPA includes the pilots who deliver Boeing airplanes to customers, including the 787. They also train the pilots of customer airlines.
"AMPA pilots took the vote after management abandoned a 50-year practice of only using qualified Boeing pilots and, without telling customers, now plans to use minimally qualified temporary pilots dressed in Boeing uniforms," said Ray Goforth, executive director of SPEEA. "The unprecedented vote came after more than three years of raising concerns and being ignored by Boeing," he added.
None of the temporary pilots have flown the 787 and many have not piloted a commercial aircraft in two years, according to SPEEA. According to the union, the temporary pilots have no more preparation on the 787 than the simulator training received by customer flight crews they are being dispatched to train.
“787 customers expect experienced flight and training instructors,” said Goforth. “This is flight training roulette for customers who do not know if their pilots will be trained by a genuine Boeing pilot or a temporary contractor dressed in a Boeing uniform. Worse, these temp pilots don’t have any more experience in the 787 simulator than the customers’ own flight crews. When a customer orders a billion dollars worth of airplanes, they don’t expect Boeing to give them a temp flight instructor who has never actually flown a 787.”
AMPA pilots said the temporary contract pilots receive none of the additional training and flight time Boeing pilots receive. Boeing Training and Flight Services hired the temporary pilots through Cambridge Communications Limited (CCL), a foreign supplier of contract pilots based on the Isle of Man. While Boeing pilots receive ongoing training and are required to meet stringent flying time requirements in the air and in simulators for each aircraft, Cambridge pilots are not.
“Even after quietly informing the company about the unprecedented Aug. 1 ‘no confidence’ vote, Boeing management insists upon moving forward with the scheme,” said Goforth.
AMPA pilots said Boeing is now telling customers they will not receive the Boeing pilot support requested and need to introduce their 787s into service. In casting the no confidence vote, the pilots’ ballot said: “Therefore, we vote that we have NO CONFIDENCE in the T&FS management to meet customer needs in a manner befitting the proud traditions of The Boeing Company.”
A local of the International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers (IFPTE), SPEEA represents 26,560 aerospace professionals at Boeing, Spirit AeroSystems in Kansas, and Triumph Composite Systems, Inc., in Spokane, Washington.
CONTACTS : SPEEA Bill Dugovich, SPEEA communications director, 206-674-7368 or 206-683-9857 or Ray Goforth, SPEEA executive director, 206-433-0991 (U.S. Country Code: 001) , ,