Sunday, April 13, 2008

I Got the AA MD-80 Travelin’ Blues

And I don’t blame American Airlines at all: not one whit.

Friday, I was in the Ontario (California) Airport Terminal 4 and like Darryl Jenkins, I blame the FAA and the Crack Congressional Crises Squad (akin to the Crack Jewish Suicide Squad). I might even blame Boeing (the manufacturer by default since they hold the MD-80 ‘type certificate’ that came with the purchase of McDonnell Douglas).

I’m sitting here typing this post in ONT - eating a too-expensive-even-by-airport-standards hamburger… and waiting optimistically for a flight back to DFW. The ‘crises’ began a long time ago but got rolling big time about the point I got airborne out of DFW on Monday -- and I’d been watching it drag out all week: hoping it would clear up before I had to return today.
VERY late last night I checked my AA reservation via laptop and a notice to call 'AA Reservations' popped up. I called them only to find my flight back to DFW was cancelled and they had me booked flying out on Saturday afternoon. As I was speaking with the very nice agent (who also had a relative trapped in Washington DC over this problem) a seat opened up for a flight later today so I took a chance. Will it go? Hope so.
I want to know several things. Why were so many of the MD-80s ‘failed’ when the previous wiring work was inspected? AA has an army of qualified A&P mechanics, and a system that supports them. Was the tech data they worked to comply with too vague? Who issued the data: the Manufacturer or the FAA? Who set the compliance urgency? The FAA?- With ‘help’ from Congress? What was the REAL risk of taking time to fix everything while keeping the schedule going, besides close to FRICKIN’ NIL? Why did the asshats in Congress start “harrumphing” and why did FAA bureaucrats start crapping their pants in response?
I’ll probably calm down and ‘let it go’ by the I get home and return to more pressing issues, but right now like thousands and thousands of other passengers I want to know the whys and wherefores of this here goat-rope, and I know it has very little to do with American Airlines.
I did get home late yesterday, and it’s good to see some questions being raised.

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