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our Air Traffic Controllers are in trouble

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posted on Jun, 8 2006 @ 04:50 PM
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Our Air Traffic Controllers have the most stressfull job in our country. Their job demands 110% of their attention at all times. After 9-11, National Security was supposedly the #1 most important subject. Apparently that is no longer the case. You see, 1 out of 4 Air Traffic Controllers will be retiring very soon. To cut budgets, they are not hiring any more. This means that our men and women who watch over our skys and keep us safe, are now going to have manditory over time. The Air Traffic Controllers know good and well this is not safe. In their job they need to be fully awake and allert at all times, something that is not going to happen if they are demanded to work long hours. That being the case they have fought the FAA with everything they had. H.R. 5449 was a their only hope. This bill prohibited the FAA from making changes unless a full agreement between the FAA and the Air Traffic Controllers was made. It is illegal for these folks to go on strike. So, they did the only thing they could to help us stay safe. They put this bill into motion. On June 7, our congress voted against it. So, now there will be less Air Traffic Controllers watching the skys, and the ones who are will be exhausted from working over time. I dont know about you, but that does not sound very safe to me.



H.R. 5449
govtrak

5/22/2006--Introduced.
Amends federal transportation law to repeal, as of April 1, 2006, provisions prohibiting the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) from implementing any proposed change to the FAA personnel management system, in cases where the services of the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service do not lead to an agreement between the Administrator and FAA employees, until 60 days after the Administrator has transmitted the proposed change (along with the objections of the exclusive bargaining representatives to the change, including the reasons for such objections) to Congress.




My thanks goes out to all Air Traffic Controllers who busted their tail ends fighting for our safety. I am sorry our Government let you down.




posted on Jun, 8 2006 @ 04:55 PM
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Here is a copy (personal info removed) from an email I recieved from the National Air Traffic Controller Association.


Your Local Air Traffic Controllers Need Your Help NOW!



On Wednesday, June 7th the United States House of Representatives will be voting on HR5449 which would restore fair bargaining to the FAA. This legislation would simply direct the FAA to use the Federal Services Impasse Panel to resolve the dispute. The same entity used by other federal employees and their employer.



As you know the air traffic controllers that guide you home each day are a dedicated, highly-skilled group of professionals that always put safety first.


By next year, the FAA’s plan could compel 1 in 4 controllers to retire in order to preserve their annuity rather than continuing to perform their critical jobs.



Support the ones that guide you home! Please call your Congressman today and ask for a yes vote on HR5449. (Most offices have voice mail, so calls outside of business hours are acceptable)





Call Congress NOW at 1-877-FAIR-FAA





Unfortunatly, I did not recieve the email until this morning after the vote had already taken place. I wish I could have posted this a week ago, maybe it would have helped, but then again.....

[edit on 8-6-2006 by mrsdudara]



posted on Jun, 8 2006 @ 05:29 PM
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Mrs. Dudara,

I feel for this group of fine people. They are the lifeline of the airline industry. Without them, there would be no flights. They are extremely dedicated and deserve better.



posted on Jun, 8 2006 @ 06:54 PM
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Thanks dbates, yes they do deserve better. Now that this has happened, the FAA can demand anything of these people, and they have no choice but to do it. I cant imagine working that way. In a stressfull place where you have no choices, and no say what so ever. It is just wrong. Of all the places to cut budgets, this should have been the last.



posted on Sep, 9 2006 @ 06:45 AM
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In light of the unfortunate crash in Ky. I thought I would bring this up again. They have found that the crash was due to the fact that there was only one air traffic controller on duty, and it was his second shift in a 24 hour period. He was not only pooped, but his attention was needed elsewhere. He had his back turned, so he didnt even see the plane take off.

FAA Today

Two years ago a supervisor in the airport's control tower wrote a memo warning that staff shortages in the tower "can cost lives
...................................................................................................................................................... ...
The warning memo was filed in September 2004, and obtained this week by the Associated Press. It complained that the air traffic manager didn't want to pay two hours of overtime to call someone in to fix a problem with the airport's radar equipment.


Eagle-Tribune


The staff shortage has forced some controllers to handle double-duty - simultaneously directing airplanes on the ground and monitoring air traffic by radar, much like the solo air traffic controller in Lexington, Ky., last weekend when a commuter plane crashed trying to take off on the wrong runway.


USA Today


The controller had worked from 6:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Saturday, taken a nine-hour break and returned to work for another shift starting at 11:30 p.m., according to the National Transportation Safety Board. The accident occurred shortly after 6 a.m. near the end of the shift.



The Associated Press also talks about this anonymous safety report.

I think the first sentence in this NY1 news article says a lot.


Prompted by last week's tragic plane crash in Kentucky, Senator Charles Schumer is demanding that New York's air traffic control towers be fully staffed around the clock.

That’s right, it’s not just little airports in Kentucky. Most of New York’s airports have not been fully staffed either. BUT now that attention is on the subject, polititians are comming out of the wood work.

Schumer says he wants the towers at all area airports to be fully staffed and called on Congress to approve $60 million for a new tower at LaGuardia Airport.
Never mind that the NATCA has been trying to do this and Congress shut them down.



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