United Airlines CEO Addresses Safety Concerns

United Airlines CEO Addresses Safety Concerns

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In recent weeks, United Airlines has been in the news for a series of incidents and accidents. For example, within 24 hours, a United 777 lost a wheel while taking off from San Francisco, while a United 737 suffered a gear collapse while landing in Houston.

This has been getting quite a bit of media attention, with many wondering if there’s a bigger safety problem at United. The company’s CEO has now penned an open letter to customers…

Scott Kirby chimes in on recent aircraft incidents

United CEO Scott Kirby has just published an open letter to customers, regarding a number of recent incidents that have gotten quite a bit of media attention. Let me just share the letter in full, as I find it to be quite interesting (even though it doesn’t actually say a whole lot):

Of all the things that make me proud of our team at United Airlines, I’m most proud of the culture we’ve built around the safety of our employees and our customers.

Safety is our highest priority and is at the center of everything we do.

Unfortunately, in the past few weeks, our airline has experienced a number of incidents that are reminders of the importance of safety. While they’re all unrelated, I want you to know that these incidents have our attention and have sharpened our focus.

Our team is reviewing the details of each case to understand what happened and using those insights to inform our safety training and procedures across all employee groups. This isin addition to some changes that were already planned, including an extra day of in-person training for all pilots starting in May and a centralized training curriculum for our new-hire maintenance technicians. We’re also dedicating more resources to supplier network management.

We empower our team to speak up and raise their hand if they see something wrong. You can be confident that every time a United plane pulls away from the gate, everyone on our team is working together to keep you safe on your trip.

In the past few years, we’ve done a lot at United to build a new culture, improve our business and earn your trust. I’m confident that we’ll learn the right lessons from these recent incidents and continue to run an operation that puts safety first and makes our employees and customers proud.

Thank you for flying United, and I hope to see you onboard soon.

United has had a series of incidents and accidents

What should we make of United’s recent safety incidents?

If there’s one thing the airline industry deserves credit for (well, with a few exceptions), it’s the unwavering commitment to safety. Airlines might not be able to get you your bags on-time, or serve you a decent meal, or provide you with good service, but they can get you from your origin to destination in a safe manner. Millions of people travel by air in the United States every day, and safety is something we basically take for granted.

With that in mind, what has been going on lately at United, and why has the airline had a series of incidents, which certainly look concerning? I think there are a few things at play here.

For one, I think a lot of this comes down to the media (including traditional media and social media):

  • With the Boeing 737 MAX fiasco, there’s increasing reporting on any incident involving a Boeing aircraft, regardless of whether or not it’s the MAX
  • On social media, you have some people (who are being amplified) trying to push the narrative that every single aircraft incident is because of “DEI” (which, for those of you outside the United States, it stands for “diversity, equity, and inclusion,” and it has become a big political topic in recent times)
  • Speaking of social media, you have people who claim United’s problem is that Kirby is spending too much time in drag, and therefore can’t run an airline (which… I can’t)
  • Every single day there are dozens of minor incidents that happen with commercial aircraft, and they rarely get reported on; so when people suddenly see a bunch of these incidents reported, they assume that something must have changed, even when it didn’t

Now, there are probably also some other factors at play:

  • United has the oldest fleet of the “big three” US carriers, and while older aircraft are absolutely safe, it’s also not unusual for them to have more incidents over time; for example, you’ll find a lot more stories involving 767s than you’ll find involving 787s
  • The industry overall definitely has a “juniority” problem, where you have a lot more junior pilots, mechanics, air traffic controllers, etc., than before the pandemic, and there’s no denying that the lack of experience eliminates a safety cushion (though that’s true of the entire industry, and not just at United)

I do think the above factors explain a vast majority of the perception of what’s going on here. Now, is there more to this? Does United have some culture problem not found at American and Delta, or can recent incidents just be explained as bad luck?

Honestly, that’s beyond my pay grade. I think United’s record of transporting people safely speaks for itself. Unless I’m missing something, the airline hasn’t had a fatal mainline accident since 9/11. Given the size of United, I can’t imagine anything has specifically changed in recent weeks or months. So I’m inclined to believe this is just bad luck combined with these stories being amplified, though I’m open to being corrected there by those who are more knowledgable!

Is the media just amplifying stories, or is there more to it?

Bottom line

United Airlines CEO Scott Kirby has penned an open letter to customers, following a series of recent safety incidents. He doesn’t say anything groundbreaking, but rather just seems to be acknowledging the media coverage of this, and states that the airline is committed to operating safely.

I think a majority of what’s going on here is that anything involving Boeing aircraft is getting a lot more attention. Perhaps there’s a little more to this that makes it United specific, but I’d feel perfectly safe flying with the airline…

What do you make of United’s recent safety incidents?

Conversations (67)
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  1. Kevin Guest

    How about paying your workers better instead of pocketing the revenue? It's been proven that better pay = better worker mentality.

  2. Tim Dunn Diamond

    those that want to continue to think this is about the MAX and not about United should know that the letter Kirby sent includes a day of training that will be scheduled for UA mechanics and pilots.
    If this extra day of training was about dealing w/ MAX aircraft, AA, WN and other airlines would be doing it also but they aren't.

    This is a United specific event. Their CEO, even before the FAA...

    those that want to continue to think this is about the MAX and not about United should know that the letter Kirby sent includes a day of training that will be scheduled for UA mechanics and pilots.
    If this extra day of training was about dealing w/ MAX aircraft, AA, WN and other airlines would be doing it also but they aren't.

    This is a United specific event. Their CEO, even before the FAA and NTSB make their findings known, believes there is reason for a focus on company safety by their pilots and mechanics - but not FAs or other ground employees.

    This rash of incidents is above average for United and compared to other airlines. Scott Kirby came to the conclusion that any rational observer can see.
    United has a safety problem. They have to figure out why but they aren't waiting for the feds to tell them they have a problem before they deal with it.

  3. Adam Guest

    For those of you complaining about the ads, do you not use an adblocker?

  4. ClownDancer Guest

    When a car is unsafe at any speed you stop making the car. When toys maim and kill children you do not fix the toy so it kills fewer children. That toy is pulled off the market. The 737 max should be pulled off the market forever. Boeing has shown time and again it cannot fix its problems. It should not be given anymore chances with the flawed Max design.
    Designing a passenger plane...

    When a car is unsafe at any speed you stop making the car. When toys maim and kill children you do not fix the toy so it kills fewer children. That toy is pulled off the market. The 737 max should be pulled off the market forever. Boeing has shown time and again it cannot fix its problems. It should not be given anymore chances with the flawed Max design.
    Designing a passenger plane so it will slways stall on takeoff is the stupidest plane ever designed. Time to end the clown show.

    1. UncleRonnie Guest

      What ClownPuncher said.

    2. Tim Dunn Diamond

      the incidents involved multiple models that are no longer in production and that other airlines also fly.
      This isn't a MAX story.
      It is a United story.

    3. Tim Done Guest

      Seriously Tim, you’re obsessed. You’re running yourself ragged. Put your phone down, go out see a friend, have a beverage. Life is more than just trolling.

  5. Barbarella Guest

    As long as the DoT does not maintain a mandatory public record of number of incidents per take-off/flight hour/asm per aircraft type and operator or whatever production metric all those discussions on comparisons with other carriers are moot.

    The media is not an objective lens. Incidents do happen. The question is to which extent the rate of those incidents is higher than other carriers and what is an acceptable level and how much is it...

    As long as the DoT does not maintain a mandatory public record of number of incidents per take-off/flight hour/asm per aircraft type and operator or whatever production metric all those discussions on comparisons with other carriers are moot.

    The media is not an objective lens. Incidents do happen. The question is to which extent the rate of those incidents is higher than other carriers and what is an acceptable level and how much is it changing other the years.

    None of that can be found in commenters' "impressions" of media coverage or FAA NTSB investigations. And it's not helping the industry reminding people how incredibly safe it is to fly.

    1. Albert Guest

      Very sane comment.
      And presumably there is a level of severity below which it is not adding value to keep such a central record.
      Once one is down to the level at which things can be hidden from a regulator, they either are, or one needs a whole enforcement-of-reporting structure.
      So it can be better to trust internal processes.

      So long as the FAA is not being preventing from making changes by manufacturer or airline lobbying, I trust them.

    2. Tim Dunn Diamond

      there are databases such as aviation herald that do report and track incidents worldwide. It isn't hard to calculate the rate of incidents not just for UA relative to the industry but UA relative to its own history.

  6. Darren C Diamond

    Scott Kirby is a self-obsessed propagandist. I miss the days when an adult, Oscar Munoz, was CEO.

    1. Tim Dunn Diamond

      can I like this comment 1000 times?

  7. FlyerDon Guest

    Not to make Tim mad, but a few months ago, before the Alaska Max issue, I was going to make a comment about all the maintenance issues Delta had been experiencing in 2023. There were two issues with sports charters. One was an A330 carrying the Steelers, heading to PIT, that dlverted to MSP due to a maintenance issue and the 76ers were stranded in MCO overnight due to their charter going OTS after taxiing...

    Not to make Tim mad, but a few months ago, before the Alaska Max issue, I was going to make a comment about all the maintenance issues Delta had been experiencing in 2023. There were two issues with sports charters. One was an A330 carrying the Steelers, heading to PIT, that dlverted to MSP due to a maintenance issue and the 76ers were stranded in MCO overnight due to their charter going OTS after taxiing out a couple times and returning to the gate with a maintenance issue. They had two memorable North Atlantic diversions, that I remember, one to Lajes (TER) and an infamous one to Goose Bay (YYR). Two gear issues, one a 757 that lost a nose wheel just before departing ATL and a flight out of BDF that diverted to JFK due to an unsafe gear indication. And let’s not forget the enroute slide deployment, in the cabin, on a transcon 767 resulting in an enroute landing. My point is these things happen, for a variety of reasons. Most of these involved older aircraft, that may or may not be one of the issues. I would have no issues flying Delta, United or American. The only thing I wouldn’t do is fly on one of their 767s on an ETOPS flight, but that’s just me.

    1. Tim Dunn Diamond

      I know about all of those issues.
      you can post all you want but Delta simply did not have as many issues in the space of time that United has had.

      Delta didn't make the nightly news multiple days in a row, the NTSB and FAA didn't investigate Delta over and over, and Delta's CEO didn't come out and have to apologize.

      I get the tendency to find fault w/ someone else in order...

      I know about all of those issues.
      you can post all you want but Delta simply did not have as many issues in the space of time that United has had.

      Delta didn't make the nightly news multiple days in a row, the NTSB and FAA didn't investigate Delta over and over, and Delta's CEO didn't come out and have to apologize.

      I get the tendency to find fault w/ someone else in order to justify your own behavior but the difference between what happened at UA and every other airline - including DL - is night and day in terms of frequency, media response, and NTSB/FAA involvement.

    2. FlyerDon Guest

      Man you’ve got some ego. I post a comment on an article and you apparently think it’s about you. I don’t care if you know “all of those issues”, I never asked or cared if you did. “you can post all you want”. How arrogant. I don’t need your permission to post a comment about anything, including a comment about Delta.

      Not that it means anything, but Delta did make the national new on...

      Man you’ve got some ego. I post a comment on an article and you apparently think it’s about you. I don’t care if you know “all of those issues”, I never asked or cared if you did. “you can post all you want”. How arrogant. I don’t need your permission to post a comment about anything, including a comment about Delta.

      Not that it means anything, but Delta did make the national new on several of their maintenance diversions, especially their passenger service fiasco after their Goose Bay diversion, and Delta did apologize for the way they handled that situation. Also I can assure you the FAA and NTSB both reviewed the slide incident.

      “I get the tendency to find fault w/someone else…”. Is that your ego again? None of my previous comments were about you or directed toward you. My comments were simply to point out maintenance diversions happen to every airline, including Delta. United had the bad luck to have theirs occur over a short period of time and during the Max hysteria.

      I wasn’t defending United or criticizing Delta and none of my comments were directed at you. Get over yourself.

    3. Tim Dunn Diamond

      I know about all of those issues.
      you can post all you want but Delta simply did not have as many issues in the space of time that United has had.

      Delta didn't make the nightly news multiple days in a row, the NTSB and FAA didn't investigate Delta over and over, and Delta's CEO didn't come out and have to apologize.

      I get the tendency to find fault w/ someone else in order...

      I know about all of those issues.
      you can post all you want but Delta simply did not have as many issues in the space of time that United has had.

      Delta didn't make the nightly news multiple days in a row, the NTSB and FAA didn't investigate Delta over and over, and Delta's CEO didn't come out and have to apologize.

      I get the tendency to find fault w/ someone else in order to justify your own behavior but the difference between what happened at UA and every other airline - including DL - is night and day in terms of frequency, media response, and NTSB/FAA involvement.

    4. Evan Guest

      FlyerDon, as someone who has paid close attention to multiple in-flight incidents across different fleets and models, why do you draw the line and refuse to fly on 767 ETOPS operations? Just curious.

    5. FlyerDon Guest

      Evan, first let me say I really liked the 767s, other than the early -200 versions that could not fly ETOPS. They were great airplanes in their time, but for me their time has come. They have flown too many hours and completed too many cycles for me to feel comfortable on while flying over the North Atlantic or the Pacific, where you can be up to 3 hours from a suitable airport in the...

      Evan, first let me say I really liked the 767s, other than the early -200 versions that could not fly ETOPS. They were great airplanes in their time, but for me their time has come. They have flown too many hours and completed too many cycles for me to feel comfortable on while flying over the North Atlantic or the Pacific, where you can be up to 3 hours from a suitable airport in the event of an inflight emergency. People will say that a well maintained 30 year old plane is just as safe as a 5 year old and I just disagree. When a plane is 30 years old it has seen a lot of maintenance. Any maintenance exposes an airplane to human error of some kind, so for me the more maintenance the aircraft has the higher the risk factor is. While the risk of a serious maintenance failure is extremely unlikely, I think that risk is higher on a 767 than say a 777. I have spent my whole life working in aviation and risk management is something you do everyday. Working for a major for 30 years I’ve seen a lot from the inside and have developed some “personal minimums “ so to speak. I not advocating for not flying on a 767 overwater, I’m just saying I’m not going to be sitting next to you if you do. For my money the 777-300 is the most rock solid airplane flying right now and that would be my first choice going across the pond.

  8. Tim Dunn Diamond

    And ABC News just carried ANOTHER story about United, repeating all of the incidents that have taken place - along w/ the letter from Scott Kirby.

  9. BradStPete Diamond

    I suppose I shouldn't confess this BUT...regarding the pop-up ads.. I read on my lap-top and have no issues... Just Sayin...

  10. John Guest

    I hate these all these silly airplane stories interfering with my ad watching. Is nothing sacred anymore?!

  11. TravelinWilly Diamond

    "I’m confident that we’ll learn the right lessons from these recent incidents..."

    Yeah, stop buying from Boeing, for starters.

    1. Tim Dunn Diamond

      most of these incidents involved older aircraft - many 20 years old or more - which suggests an airline -specific issue.

      Boeing did not have production and quality control issues 20 years ago.

      Other airlines are flying 20 year old planes without the rate of incidents that United is having.

  12. Joe Guest

    Lucky, I’m a very long time reader of the blog here. Been reading your articles for probably 9 years now, if not longer than that. Exclusively on mobile, too. The new ads are so utterly horrific to deal with as a reader, that I can see myself no longer reading/clicking through from your newsletter if the site is going to stay like this. The mobile UX is really horrible now. Do you/your team have plans...

    Lucky, I’m a very long time reader of the blog here. Been reading your articles for probably 9 years now, if not longer than that. Exclusively on mobile, too. The new ads are so utterly horrific to deal with as a reader, that I can see myself no longer reading/clicking through from your newsletter if the site is going to stay like this. The mobile UX is really horrible now. Do you/your team have plans to make changes to this new ads implementation to make navigating the articles a bit smoother? Is it a temporary glitch etc that you’re aware of? I’ve seen a few other comments recently and thought nothing of it, but I’m really seeing the issues now. Thanks for everything you do for the avgeek community.

    1. A220HubandSpoke Member

      We should honestly bring this up in every post of his. I keep "accidentally" (by design click on the ads when I try to tap the tiny x.

    2. Udo Member

      There were two to three weeks where the ads completely covered the content on the mobile and couldn’t be closed. It’s truly hopeless. I like the idea to add these comments under every post. I have also been reading this blog for many years, but it’s become nigh impossible due to the pop-up ads.

    3. ConcordeBoy Diamond

      I hate to say this, as I know the guy derives much of his revenue from ads...

      ...but I honestly cannot understand how in 2024, people are whining about ads, when all you have to do is put any of the myriad of free ad blockers on your browser, and it'd cost you a grand total of $0.

      *poof* No more ads. You could've done this a decade ago.

    4. MH New Member

      The problem is ads on mobile devices, not desktop browsers

    5. Ted New Member

      Look into using nextdns to block the ads. No more ads on this site for me.

    6. cbchicago Guest

      If you think the ads are bad I get notified everytime I visit about the over 100 trackng sites that have been blocked because I open OMAAT.com.

    7. W Gold

      @Ben - Would you be able to increase the size of the "X" on the ads at the bottom of the screen? I also read your blog exclusively on my phone and the recent ads have become extremely bothersome, and a big part of that is that it is very hard to close them. I have the S21 Ultra, which has a curved screen (as do most newer Samsung phones). As a result, the ads...

      @Ben - Would you be able to increase the size of the "X" on the ads at the bottom of the screen? I also read your blog exclusively on my phone and the recent ads have become extremely bothersome, and a big part of that is that it is very hard to close them. I have the S21 Ultra, which has a curved screen (as do most newer Samsung phones). As a result, the ads "X" is on that curvature, and I have to hit the "X" in a very specific way to get it to dissappear. More often though, I'll accidentally open the ad rather than closing it. I know most of your revenue comes from ads, so if you could at least increase the size of the "X", a lot of us would appreciate it. I love your blog and thanks for your continuous posting over the years!

    8. caelus678 Member

      No problem browsing with my computer, but quite annoying when browsing on my phone, ads flying all over the place(-_-)

    9. Tim Guest

      I don’t think it’s just OMAAT. I’m having the same issue reading Gary Leff’s columns too. I’m think it’s related to the site they use.

    10. Tim Guest

      I don’t think it’s just OMAAT. I’m having the same issue reading Gary Leff’s columns too. I’m think it’s related to the site they use.

  13. Evan Guest

    United absolutely has a "juniority" problem. Ten years ago, you would never have found a 767/777 FO in their late 20s -- now, these folks are everywhere. Now, if you started flying Cessnas at 17 and worked your way up at a regional, you could be a very competent pilot before you reach 30. But you used to reliably see only the most seasoned pilots on international routes, and there was something comforting about the...

    United absolutely has a "juniority" problem. Ten years ago, you would never have found a 767/777 FO in their late 20s -- now, these folks are everywhere. Now, if you started flying Cessnas at 17 and worked your way up at a regional, you could be a very competent pilot before you reach 30. But you used to reliably see only the most seasoned pilots on international routes, and there was something comforting about the number of "Sullys" out there. There is a trickle-down problem, which is why i'm extremely hesitant to fly on JSX or charter operators, where the standards are even lower.

    1. dan Guest

      I totally agree with the pop up ads...they show up on both my mobile device AND laptop. Its quite annoying (yes, I understand ad revenue for the host website in a measure).
      Yet I wonder it the hosts of this website are frustrated when the table are turned on them? Just curios---not ragging

  14. DesertGhost Guest

    The things that seem to concern most airline pundits and blog commentators are the presence or absence of individual TV screens and free or cheap wi-fi. Safety doesn't seem to matter anymore. It's almost taken for granted.

    1. 305 Guest

      Ah yes, the pundits/bloggers are responsible for all of this! They call the shots; not the airlines, not the aircraft manufacturer...

    2. Joshua K. Guest

      I don't know what you expect from the pundits and blog commentators. When they enter the airplane, they can see whether they have individual TV screens and how much the wi-fi costs. They don't have any way to check the maintenance status of the plane. So it makes sense for them to write about the information they actually can provide.

    3. Tim Dunn Diamond

      you should tell the big 3 broadcast news shows which have had United in their first block of news or as the lead story for aircraft incidents more times in the past 3 weeks than any other US airline has ever had.
      it isn't made up. It is the way the media works.
      You want to stay out of the news, don't give them any reason to talk aboutyou

  15. Robert Member

    AA 587 (A300 crash) was a few months after 9/11, but otherwise no major mainline incidents since then, and no major incidents since 2009.

    Given that the "juniority" of the regional pilots was seen as a cause in the 2009 incident, and federal law passed in its wake increased training/regulation for regional pilots, I am more concerned about more inexperienced pilots than (otherwise well maintained) old planes. I agree that a lot of the...

    AA 587 (A300 crash) was a few months after 9/11, but otherwise no major mainline incidents since then, and no major incidents since 2009.

    Given that the "juniority" of the regional pilots was seen as a cause in the 2009 incident, and federal law passed in its wake increased training/regulation for regional pilots, I am more concerned about more inexperienced pilots than (otherwise well maintained) old planes. I agree that a lot of the recent news on minor airline incidents are covering events that are non-newsworthy, absent the issues with Boeing.

  16. 767-223 Guest

    Have to wonder how much of this, if any, is related to outsourcing maintenance to cheaper firms overseas which have little to no FAA oversight compared to maintenance performed in the US by FAA certified AMTs. Admittedly, many other US carriers including AA, WN, NK and others outsource heavy maintenance checks overseas but perhaps the firm that UA uses needs a closer look under the microscope.

    1. Plane Jane Guest

      Perhaps so, but Delta outsources, by bar, the most maintenance work of the US3 (I believe they still have a joint maintenance place in Mexico with AM) and you don't really seem to see this type of maintenance mishaps with DL

    2. ConcordeBoy Diamond

      But, as with most things being discussed here, that's not new.... to the tune of decades.

      United, and Continental before it, have been outsourcing some aspects of MRO to foreign operators for the 30yrs+ I've been following in the industry, and probably long before that.

      For example, every one of their 767-400ERs and their GE-powered 777-200ERs were maintained in Asia, multiple times in their service life, and all of them are 20yrs+ old.

      ...

      But, as with most things being discussed here, that's not new.... to the tune of decades.

      United, and Continental before it, have been outsourcing some aspects of MRO to foreign operators for the 30yrs+ I've been following in the industry, and probably long before that.

      For example, every one of their 767-400ERs and their GE-powered 777-200ERs were maintained in Asia, multiple times in their service life, and all of them are 20yrs+ old.

      If foreign MRO was at issue, it would've manifested long before this.

  17. lavanderialarry Guest

    United has a large number of aircraft in its fleet that are older (B757-200, B767-300ER, B767-400ER, B757-300ER, B777-200A, B777-200ER, A320, A319, 737-800, and 737-700.

    1. Michael Guest

      Delta also has a very large number of older planes in their fleet. Problems like planes shedding entire wheel assemblies should never happen, whatever the age of the plane.

      I don't know if United is just getting a run of bad luck, but it is troubling.

      It could be worse. Alaska Airlines has had a similar run of bad luck, and they have a documented history of killing people solely because they cheaped out on...

      Delta also has a very large number of older planes in their fleet. Problems like planes shedding entire wheel assemblies should never happen, whatever the age of the plane.

      I don't know if United is just getting a run of bad luck, but it is troubling.

      It could be worse. Alaska Airlines has had a similar run of bad luck, and they have a documented history of killing people solely because they cheaped out on maintenance. If any airline doesn't deserve the benefit of the doubt, it is Alaska.

      It's quite fitting Alaska is proud of flying Boeing products. The airline with the history of playing fast and loose with safety is proud to source planes from the company who's current motto might as well be "safety third".

  18. ORD_Is_My_Second_Home Gold

    As a 1K, I feel perfectly safe on United, although the condition of some of their older aircraft (especially A320 series) are a little disconcerting. I think this is just a string of back luck and not anything systemic. That being said, I find that Kirby's "corrective actions" are a little underwhelming when it comes to satisfying the salivating mouths of social media "experts". A little more of a grand gesture would quiet them.

    1. D.A. Guest

      This 1K agrees with your assessment of the same email I got this morning. Kirby's statement was weak at best. He starts with corporate speak where safety is a priority, but then he makes no real acknowledgement as to what processes that conributed to the recent maintenance lapses. No mention as to what corrections they are immediately making. All he does is say that they are going to do more pilot training. Really, the pilots...

      This 1K agrees with your assessment of the same email I got this morning. Kirby's statement was weak at best. He starts with corporate speak where safety is a priority, but then he makes no real acknowledgement as to what processes that conributed to the recent maintenance lapses. No mention as to what corrections they are immediately making. All he does is say that they are going to do more pilot training. Really, the pilots now have to cover maintenance's screw-ups?

      That said, I do not see it as "bad luck" but more a systemic failure in maintenance practices. I cancelled my UA flights this week for another carrier that appears to have their maintenance act together.

    2. ILikeBragging Guest

      Global Services here, I concur. Since we're gloating about status. Globalist also. Oh and Titanium.

    3. Ricport Guest

      Well said. Either Kirby's arrogance/stubbornness won the day, or the people advising him are dimwits. His response was as weak as water. DL has old planes, too, and you don't see a news story every other day about another incident. At the minimum, they should have done some kind of mandatory "safety day" or week, where every maintenance employee would spend a day brushing up on the basics. And why isn't UA's head of maintenance out on the unemployment line?

  19. Tim Dunn Diamond

    Ben's assessment is largely accurate - except that the standard of safety is not measured by number of accidents or deaths but by making sure none of that happens - and that process starts when there are any indications of anything being less than safe.

    United's rate of incidents since the first of this month has been well above average not just for United but for comparable sized airlines including Boeing operators.

    United actually operates...

    Ben's assessment is largely accurate - except that the standard of safety is not measured by number of accidents or deaths but by making sure none of that happens - and that process starts when there are any indications of anything being less than safe.

    United's rate of incidents since the first of this month has been well above average not just for United but for comparable sized airlines including Boeing operators.

    United actually operates fewer mainline flights than AA, DL or WN and none of those airlines have had a similar streak of incidents anytime in years, if ever.

    Kirby's words don't matter; fixing whatever problem exists does matter.

    If UA wants to operate an older fleet, they must have the maintenance processes in place. They also have to ensure their pilots are sufficiently trained.

    None of the incidents by themselves is significant; the sheer number of them is what is problematic and cannot help but draw attention.

    No other airline is repeatedly in the first block of national news broadcasts if not the lead story for safety incidents and accidents.

    1. A220HubandSpoke Member

      It's honestly a little disgusting to suggest that United mechanics are not up to par, they take pride and care in their work.

      Coincidences happen.

    2. paprikasprinkles Guest

      United has an older fleet.

    3. Tim Dunn Diamond

      nobody suggested that UA mechanics aren't up to par.
      Certainly not me.

      That doesn't mean that UA's older fleet has specific maintenance requirements as part of operating an older fleet.

      And since Delta operates older copies of some aircraft of the same types as UA operates, there is a methodology to operating an older fleet.

      UA is copying DL's strategy in holding onto older aircraft because it requires less capex, aircraft last longer than...

      nobody suggested that UA mechanics aren't up to par.
      Certainly not me.

      That doesn't mean that UA's older fleet has specific maintenance requirements as part of operating an older fleet.

      And since Delta operates older copies of some aircraft of the same types as UA operates, there is a methodology to operating an older fleet.

      UA is copying DL's strategy in holding onto older aircraft because it requires less capex, aircraft last longer than was previously assumed, but there are much more in-depth procedures required to live with an older fleet.

      Coincidences do happen. UA is statistically having far more incidents and accidents than similarly sized airlines.

      The FAA and NTSB will attempt to find out if there are any connections between these incidents; UA's execs have to admit there is a problem for them, not Boeing.

    4. A220HubandSpoke Member

      Apologies Tim I was commenting on the post, not trying to reply to you

    5. Tim Dunn Diamond

      thank you for saying so

    6. Ricport Guest

      One or two incidents in a close time proximity is a coincidence. Multiple ones are a significant safety issue. Nobody is saying UA's folks don't care about safety, but it's naive to say they don't need some additional training, or at the very least, the head of maintenance has some serious answering to do.

    7. Tim Done Guest

      “Ben's assessment is largely accurate” because these site hosts live for your validation. Why do you have the need to tell everyone whether you agree or not? It’s a frequent refrain from you.

    8. Tim Dunn Diamond

      and are you so incapable of using your own name or even a separate independent fake name?

      Are you really that ashamed of what you write that you aren't willing to own it.

      I disagree w/ people at times and they know it - and you argue incessantly on that basis. In this case, Ben got it largely right.

      You just want to be able to control and manipulate the narrative w/o anyone else = and that is simply not going to happen.

    9. ORD_Is_My_Second_Home Gold

      So TechOps is the only perfect MRO, right, Tim?

    10. Nick Guest

      Nowadays, whenever Tim Dunn comments... he becomes the topic, not the context of the article. The obession seems too extreme...

    11. Tim Dunn Diamond

      it is over the top, esp. when some people can't even bother to use their own username instead of mocking me.

      For people that want to read less from me, they aren't smart enough to understand that they are doing the exact opposite.

      Read other people's posts, make your own factual comments, and quit obsessing w/ other people.

      It truly is stunning how stupid some people are

    12. MM Guest

      Name calling says more about you than them.
      Chill dude.

    13. MaxPower Diamond

      The stupidity lies in your extreme lack of self awareness. Even the owners of the websites make fun of you knowing when something will rile you up and say it as a joke…
      It’s incredible how little awareness of social interactions you have

    14. ConcordeBoy Diamond

      Nowadays, whenever Tim Dunn comments... he becomes the topic, not the context of the article. The obession seems too extreme...

      At some point though, the blame for that shifts to other commenters.

      Blog is open to the public, he can say what he has to say; but doesn't mean 20 other people have to pile on, in each post. Yet they do, like clockwork.

      Is that (any of it) really called for? Tim Dunn isn't the one doing all that.

    15. Ken Guest

      Hear Hear!! Perhaps if everyone ignores him, he won't have to keep commenting and responding to other comments directed at him. I've long stopped reading any comment by him. I just skip and read the next. Although he makes valuable comments at times, the majority is just annoying I'll rather ignore

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Joe Guest

Lucky, I’m a very long time reader of the blog here. Been reading your articles for probably 9 years now, if not longer than that. Exclusively on mobile, too. The new ads are so utterly horrific to deal with as a reader, that I can see myself no longer reading/clicking through from your newsletter if the site is going to stay like this. The mobile UX is really horrible now. Do you/your team have plans to make changes to this new ads implementation to make navigating the articles a bit smoother? Is it a temporary glitch etc that you’re aware of? I’ve seen a few other comments recently and thought nothing of it, but I’m really seeing the issues now. Thanks for everything you do for the avgeek community.

6
John Guest

I hate these all these silly airplane stories interfering with my ad watching. Is nothing sacred anymore?!

5
Udo Member

There were two to three weeks where the ads completely covered the content on the mobile and couldn’t be closed. It’s truly hopeless. I like the idea to add these comments under every post. I have also been reading this blog for many years, but it’s become nigh impossible due to the pop-up ads.

5
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