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Boeing to Offer More Staff Buyouts

Travel slump leaves aerospace giant looking to cut more jobs than previously planned

Boeing BA Co. plans more job cuts in response to a pandemic-driven drop in jetliner demand it expects to continue for at least three years.

The aerospace giant told its employees in a memo late Monday that it is adding a second round of buyout offers, a move that would further reduce its workforce by an unspecified number beyond the cut of 19,000 already announced in July.

The company has increased the target set in April of cutting overall staff numbers by around 10%, according to the memo to staff from Chief Executive David Calhoun.

Further details are expected on Aug. 24, with the takeup of the buyout offer by staff reducing the number of compulsory job cuts required.

Excerpt from WSJ
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American Airlines to Cut Service to Small Cities as Federal Aid Runs Out

 

Some small cities will be without air service altogether in October when American Airlines Group Inc. AAL -1.94% cuts flights, as a fight to extend additional federal funds has been mired in a broader stalemate over pandemic relief.

American said it would stop flights to 15 cities once a requirement that the airline maintain the routes in exchange for federal aid expires. American struck the small cities from its schedule from Oct. 7 through Nov. 3, describing the move as the first step in re-evaluating its network in the coming weeks.

American’s cuts will affect airports in cities such as Dubuque, Iowa, Joplin, Mo., New Haven, Conn., and Stillwater, Okla., where the airline operates regional flights that funnel passengers into its bigger hubs. Several of the airports where American is cutting back aren’t served by any other airline.

Excerpt from WSJ
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To Build a Plane That Can Fly Itself, Start With a Pilot in the Cockpit

A Northern California startup has devised a novel strategy to create planes that can fly themselves, by first testing a new generation of automated flight controls during conventional cargo flights flown by pilots.

Starting with videos of a demonstration flight slated for release Thursday, San Francisco-based Xwing Inc. aims to jump-start such technology by showing its reliability on current turboprops already flying established routes in everyday conditions. Relying on a handful of specially outfitted Cessna Grand Caravans—workhorses of short-haul, single-pilot cargo operations nationwide—the company seeks to gather data about navigation, automated emergency maneuvers and autonomous landing features ultimately intended for commercial use without anyone in the cockpit.

Proponents say U.S. authorities could authorize selected flights without pilots over stretches of water or uninhabited regions as soon as the first half of 2022, potentially years before the Federal Aviation Administration certifies all-new, comparably sized autonomous designs being developed by competitors. In addition to the person flying the plane, pilots on the ground are slated to monitor trips and communicate with air-traffic controllers, at least initially. The single-engine planes carry some 4,000 pounds of cargo, and Xwing anticipates cruising at altitudes under 10,000 feet and at 230 mph—well below most airline operations.

Excerpt from WSJ
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Southwest and American Trim More Flying

Airlines hunker down for fall with fewer flights and tougher passenger protocols as Covid-19 cases stall demand

American Airlines AAL -3.74% Group Inc. and Southwest Airlines Co. LUV -2.30% said they were tempering expectations for an air-travel recovery, as mounting coronavirus cases have driven down bookings by as much as 80% in some parts of the U.S.

American, which has been flying twice as much as some of its rivals as part of a plan to capture summer demand, said Thursday that it will pare some flying. Southwest, which also maintained more flying this summer than United Airlines Holdings Inc. UAL -3.59% and Delta Air Lines Inc., DAL -2.06% said cancellations are picking up and demand looks weaker heading into fall.

Executives at American said bookings have started to slide and business travel, which usually picks up after Labor Day, shows no signs of resuming. “In short, the crisis continues,” Chief Executive Doug Parker said on a call to discuss results for the latest quarter.

Excerpt from WSJ
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