UPS fights against its pilots for rest and duty reform

Cargo Airline Association

The latest news on the Pilot fatigue issue the battle between big business and its pilots (who incidentally, move all the parcels to make the big business’s money) came today from a new push from cargo airlines to fight against their own flight crews by using their Cargo Airline Association (CAA), who also has been pegged as pushing buttons of leaders on Capitol hill to ensure their members are exempt from the from the new FAA sleep and work time regulations.

Members of the CAA are as follows, and carry a hefty weight to throw around on Capitol Hill;

All-Cargo Airlines
Members, Board of Directors
ABX Air, Inc.
Atlas Air, Inc.
FedEx express
United Parcel Service
Capital Cargo International
DHL express
Kalitta Air, LLC

Airport Associate Members
Louisville International Airport
Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority
Ft. Wayne International Airport

Other Associate Members
Airbus North America Holdings, Inc.
Aviation Facilities Company, Inc.
Bristol Associates, Inc.
Campbell-Hill Aviation/TranSystems
Keiser & Associates

CAA / ups
CAA member UPS

Note that in December, UPS VP of Flight Operations Matt Capozzoli wrote a letter to his own UPS pilots:  “First, we want to clear up one notion that continues to cause concern among our people.  It’s the mistaken idea that UPS somehow worked the regulatory system for a ‘cargo carve-out.’  That’s simply not true,” added Capozzoli.

I have been told that those claims of innocence by the UPS brass are falsehoods and contradictory to the facts surrounding the campaign to ensure safety for pilots.

Sources at the Coalition of Airline Pilots Association (CAPA) confirm that over the period of last summer and fall in 2011, while they were working to ensure “one level of safety” for all professional flight deck crew members in DC, that the CAA was in fact, lobbying on Capitol hill to secure the cargo exemption for all of its member airlines, of which UPS is one, along with other carriers like FedEx.

CAPA represents nearly 30,000 line flying professional flight crew members in their member associations.

So despite their rhetoric and protestations to the contrary, common sense would tell me that by UPS ( or FedEx et al) via the CAA, is now joining the fight to keep cargo pilots flying under no regulations for sleep and work hour, they support the “cargo cut out”.

By sending pilots flying into the skyway without due rest, creates   unsafe conditions for not just the ups crew, but everyone else in the skyways traveling.

As quoted by A January 2012 article on pilot fatigue, the disconnect between US
Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood and members of pilots trade associations is clear;

“This is a major safety achievement. We made a promise to the traveling public that we would do everything possible to make sure pilots are rested when they get in the cockpit. This new bar raises the safety bar to prevent fatigue,” said United States Transportation Secretary Ray Lahood.

While the new regulations will benefit both pilots and passengers, some important factors are overlooked. The ruling includes an exclusion for cargo carriers, such as UPS and FedEx, which would give companies the opportunity to force their pilots to continue to operate under the outdated regulations.

“Cargo pilots are no less susceptible to fatigue than passenger pilots. Our crew members and the passengers they carry operate in the same airspace as cargo operators. Bystanders on the ground are no less affected by an accident if an aircraft is carrying boxes rather than people,” said Southwest Airlines Pilots’ Association president, Capt. Steve Chase.

So, even the passenger pilots who are benefactors of the new flight time/duty time rules agree that no matter the carriage, no matter the aircraft type, humans are susceptible to errors caused by fatigue.

If, any big business is going to claim amnesty on their fighting interest in saving the dollar over human lives, I would hope there are no trails leading back proving otherwise, but the truth will emerge.

Read the following disclosure and details of the CAA;

The Cargo Airline Association (“CAA”) has moved in federal court to intervene in the lawsuit filed by IPA.  The CAA seeks to join the litigation in support of the FAA’s decision to exclude cargo operators from the Agency’s final pilot duty and rest rule published last month.

UPS is listed in the court filing as a member of the CAA.

“UPS is sending a mixed message,” said IPA President Bob Travis.  “The Company has been steadfast in their assertion that they have not been party to lobbying for nor backing a cargo carve-out,” he added.

In December, UPS VP of Flight Operations Matt Capozzoli wrote UPS pilots:  “First, we want to clear up one notion that continues to cause concern among our people.  It’s the mistaken idea that UPS somehow worked the regulatory system for a ‘cargo carve-out.’  That’s simply not true,” added Capozzoli.

Citing “conflicting signals,” Travis stated that the CAA’s sole purpose in joining the lawsuit is to support the cargo carve-out.

“UPS is a member of the CAA, and financially provides backing to the CAA.  IPA members will not understand how this action by the CAA is consistent with UPS statements indicating that the Company has not backed a cargo exclusion from the new FAA rule,” added Travis.
In the meantime, the IPA suit against the FAA remains on course with preliminary motions due Monday.