American Airlines Pilots Reach Deal

Monday, July 24th 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — AMR Corp.'s American Airlines and its pilots union have reportedly agreed to a tentative deal that would extend the union's contract and wipe out a $45.5 million debt to the airline.

The Allied Pilots Association and the airline both said they reached an agreement, but they didn't provide details.

The Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported Sunday that the union and airline agreed to extend the contract for one year. The deal also includes an agreement to eliminate the union's $45.5 million debt to the airline for a sickout in February 1999 over a pilot dispute, the newspaper reported.

The sickout forced American to cancel more than 6,700 flights, costing the carrier $255 million and causing a judge to fine the union $45.5 million for ignoring his order to tell pilots to return to their cockpits. The judge ordered the union to pay the fine to the airline.

The dispute stemmed from bickering over how pilots from Reno Air would be integrated into American's pilot corps. American acquired Reno Air in late 1998, and the union contended that Reno pilots should be integrated into American from the purchase date, raising salaries for those affected from that time.

The newspaper also reported that the contract includes a 3 percent pay raise for American pilots; a requirement that regional jets with 51 seats or more be flown by American rather than by its affiliate, American Eagle; and allowing American to proceed with plans to buy more long-range international jets.

The union said details of the agreement would be released by president Rich LaVoy by Tuesday. The agreement needs approval from the union's 10,500 members.