American Airlines has announced that more jobs will be coming to Tulsa.
The airline confirmed today that 400 new positions will be added with most being mechanics. Managing Director of Tulsa Maintenance Base Erik Olund made an announcement in a letter to staff.
"I'm excited to share with you that we will be adding more than 400 new positions, in many different skills, to support the work that will be transitioning to the base over the next several months. The positions will be in multiple areas based on future dock plans and projected needs, so our team can be trained, well-equipped, and ready for what comes our way," said Olund.
The new work will involve Airbus A321 aircraft as well as Boeing 787 and Boeing 777 aircraft. Mayor G.T. Bynum took to Twitter on Wednesday to express his excitement for the announcement.
Hiring this many employees at the maintenance base is something that has not happened in more than a decade. Olund said the move shows American Airlines’ long-term commitment to Tulsa.
"We're gonna need talented folks that are eager and really willing to come to work and excited to be a part of the American team,” Olund said.
American Airlines said it needs so many new positions in large part because of new work on the Boeing 787 "Dreamliner" fleet.
The airline has had the plane for a few years and now it is time for scheduled maintenance. Olund said work is also needed for the airline's flagship plane, the Boeing 777-200.
"This airplane is in for a landing gear change today, and it's part of the strong culture of long term sustainable work we're trying to build in Tulsa,” he said. “Along with bringing the 787 in, these airplanes are our future."
Transport Workers Union 514 President Dale Danker said the jobs will pay between $13 to about $20 an hour.
He said the average worker at the base is 58 years old, adding that the new jobs will have a big impact on employees who have already been with the company for years.
“The joke around the base was, if you had 20 years in, you [were] considered a new hire. You got the worst shift, the worst set of days off. If you [were] a 20 year person, you [were] a new hire,” Danker said.
About half of the 400 job will be mechanic positions. Other jobs will include aircraft cleaners and engineers.
Job applications will be posted on the company's website. The company’s goal is to fill all the positions within the next four months.