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Positive Rate Weekly - 2/7/17
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Positive Rate Weekly - 2/7/17

 

from the MEC vice chairman

Today, I have two things that I want to talk about—giving and safety.

The first topic is giving. Most of you have read about what our INDY pilots are doing to support the Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital. Our pilots there are attempting to fully fund a pilot and football themed room for the children to use. The goal was to raise $50,000, and we have raised $38,000 to date.

Let’s do this! Here is the link, and if each of us will just give $3.00, we will reach our goal! This is a great opportunity to show off the character and generosity of our crew force. Knowing our pilots, I predict within two hours after the release of today’s Positive Rate we will reach our goal. Your support is greatly appreciated.

The second topic is safety. Last week, our company safety team came over to the ALPA office to brief the MEC on the activities of their group and the efforts being made to enhance safety in all areas of flight operations. I will tell you this, there’s a new sheriff in town, and the MEC and Officers liked what we heard. As a line pilot, I am fully aware of the perception that safety is spelt with a $. As an MEC Officer and someone privy to the facts on how this team is approaching safety, I find great reason to be hopeful with the direction that's being established.

A few things were said by the management safety team that I think are important to share. This one in particular really hit home for me, “When it comes to safety, we don’t dabble.” In addition to the information the company is using from FOQA data, ASAP reports, QA data and training scenarios to improve safety, the behind the scenes safety measures that were briefed to the Officers all clearly demonstrate that the management safety team is definitely not dabbling.

Another point made during the meeting that I’d like to share is the concept of safety versus risk. During the briefing, it was mentioned that there is safety and there is risk—they are not the same. I think we all can agree that what we do is sometimes risky, but it is not unsafe. This is an important concept to wrap our arms around. There is not a crewmember on the property that would do something that was unsafe; managing risks, that’s just the nature of what we do, but unsafe—NEVER!

The most beneficial result of all the data available to us today is that it opens the door to provide analysis and predictive data in which we may be able to see a problem and eliminate it before it can negatively affect one of our crews. For example, I reached out to our FOQA team to ask what events they are tracking that could possibly lead to an incident or accident. Their data shows that we are having numerous unstable approaches (high, fast, large descent rates) at high altitude airports, greater than 3,000 feet. Those of you operating into a high altitude airport need to keep this in mind and plan appropriately. This is just one unofficial example of how predictive data can work.

Now is not the time to look in the rear view mirror and think of safety with a $. Now is the time for each of us to do everything we can to enhance safety and minimize risk wherever and whenever we can. To that end, we were briefed to pass along the importance of filling out ASAP reports about anything that even had a hint of safety associated with it. We are a data-driven company, so let’s provide as much data as we can to help point out problems and make the necessary changes needed. I honestly believe that this team in place has a true commitment to safety for our pilots and the vision, mission and strategy necessary to achieve our safety goals. Safety is not a sometimes thing, it’s an all the time thing that can only be enhanced by working together as a team.

Fly safe,

John

“Shortcuts make for long journeys.”
—Tolkein

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from the mec secretary treasurer

Third Payment of the Lump Sum Signing Bonus Update

First a review, the administration of the third payment is governed by two source documents:

  1. The ALPA Admin Manual Section 40.3.J.3.f states: The MEC shall, in consultation with ALPA counsel designated by the Director of the ALPA Legal Department, set aside adequate monies from the total distribution amount into a Holdback Fund as a reserve to correct any inadvertent errors or omissions in the allocation calculation and distribution.

  2. The 2015 CBA Lump Sum Distribution Letter further states:  There will be retained from the total estimated payment, a sufficient reserve holdback, as required by ALPA Policy Section 40.3.J.3.f., of five percent (5%) of the total estimated payment.

These provisions together create a holdback designed to ensure that a small reserve fund exists so that if an error is spotted or a recalculation is later deemed necessary to fully compensate someone under the MEC allocation methodology, there are sufficient funds remaining to do so.  Once those contingencies are resolved, the remaining monies are distributed. 

So, where are we in the process and when will I be getting paid? The ALPA Admin Manual section 40.3.J describes an expedited dispute resolution process and arbitration option to correct or challenge lump sum payments. Both of those processes were completed last year. Our current efforts revolve around resolving two contingent calculation issues involving two groups of pilots that impact monies that would remain in this reserve holdback:

  1. Defining and accurately paying pilots who were on long term military leave during the amendable period and either have returned from such leave or are still on leave. Both of these groups need to be made whole from funds in the third payment based upon the crew position they returned to and/or will return to after returning from military leave. The company has provided us a list of these pilots. We are in discussions with the company about the administration of paying these pilots, and we no longer see this as a major obstacle to getting the third payment to the pilot group.

  2. The Passover pay grievance, which is a bigger obstacle. We are in discussions with the company about a grievance filed on behalf of a significant number of pilots who were denied 767 passover pay over the last few years. Some of these pilots may also need to be made whole – because like the military leave pilots described above, the amount of their retro signing bonus would depend on their pay status, which would be dependent upon the result of this pending grievance -- from funds from the holdback. Active discussions with the company are in progress  but the timeline for resolution of this grievance is presently difficult to define.  Unfortunately, until this issue is resolved, given the size of the potential change in payments involved for this group, we can’t release the third payment. 

We will keep you updated on our progress in resolving these contingent payment issues that impact the holdback. Please know that we are working to distribute the third payment to you as soon as possible. Please stay tuned for more information as we receive it. If you have any questions, feel free to call me at 901-752-8749 (Ext 2011) or email at Rich.Zins@alpa.org. Fly safe.

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mem md-11 first officer needs your assistance

MD-11 First Officer Mark Mainetti lost his home last night due to a fire. Thankfully, his family escaped unharmed. Unfortunately, they only got out with the clothes on their back—everything was lost.

As you can imagine, this is a very difficult time for Mark and his family. Mark will need to get off a few trips in order to work with his insurance company to set up temporary housing and purchase clothes and other items that were lost in the fire. Any FO willing to offer a PDO bump will be doing Mark and his family a huge favor. The trips Mark has available are:

Trip 198 - 10 Feb.
Trip 32 - 19 Feb.
Trip 20 - 26 Feb.

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from the military affairs committee: consolidation and military leave

Both ALPA and FedEx have a long and storied tradition of members and employees who proudly serve in the Armed Forces of our great nation. Many of our current crew members have served both on active duty and in the reserve/guard, and we often sponsor and recommend fellow military members for hiring consideration at FedEx. With increased operational demands across all the branches of the military, we see longer detachments and obligations for reserve members as they “fill-in-the-gaps” for manning shortages on the active duty side of the house. While some military duties are simply not deferrable, there are many volunteer opportunities available to our reservists. ALPA and FedEx proudly support our crew members as they serve our country while balancing the demands of dual careers.

A critical component of success and safety at FedEx for our new hires is proficiency through consolidation. This FAA requirement is a core foundation of providing new flight crews operational proficiency in a new seat position, and in the case of new hires, the additional experience and familiarity with our airline operations. Continuity of training through consolidation is highly desired, and a reasonable expectation of all new hires. The Military Affairs Committee has fielded several questions from new hires lately concerning 30-90 day military orders that preclude them from completing initial IOE and/or consolidation. For military duty that is not deferrable, there should be no apprehension or concern from the crew member as they are clearly protected by USERRA. When volunteering for military duties, while you are still protected by USERRA, we do offer advice to our new hires on postponing or rescheduling any long-term military duties until they are complete with IOE and consolidation. This might often involve “swapping” detachments with other members of their unit in order to complete IOE, or volunteering for detachments at a later date to facilitate consolidation. In most cases, when operationally possible, unit commanding officers have worked with our crew members to ensure they had a 3-4 month period of decreased military commitments in order to complete training and consolidation. 

The end goal is to provide our new hire reservists, a seamless transition as they enter their primary career as a FedEx pilot, while continuing to responsibly balance the call of duty. Completing IOE and consolidation as a new hire is a critical component in this process and a key factor in maintaining proficiency and safety. For current crew members, please continue to direct any questions or concerns you may have to members of the Military Affairs Committee (FedEx-Military@alpa.org). If you have any questions or require guidance for potential new hires, please feel free to contact us as well. Thank you for your service.

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We've almost reached our goal of $50,000 - donate today!

Your assistance and support of our fundraising efforts this past holiday season were spectacular. We were able to reach out to two additional charities and support their causes. We will continue to reach out and support the children who need us the most in the places where we live and work. Indianapolis is our current endeavor. The Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital is a specialized children's hospital with a multi-disciplinary team approach to children’s health. Through the Peyton Manning Children’s Health system at St. Vincent families receive faster access to more than 100 highly experienced pediatric specialists. A majority of these physicians are double board certified in pediatrics and in one or more of 25 different pediatric specialty areas.

Our goal is to raise $50,000 to allow a room to be decorated in an aviation theme. Currently, we are at $38,320.27. The FedEx Pilots’ Charitable Fund made a donation of $5,000 in January. We would like to be able to make another sizable donation at the end of March. Any funds donated to the FedEx Pilots’ Charitable Fund (fedexpcf.org) from today through March 31, 2017, will be donated directly to the Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital. Additionally, you can donate directly by clicking here. Thank you once again for reaching out and allowing us to help children in their time of need.

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From the fatigue risk management committee

Fatigue Event Summary

33 Fatigue Events in the last 3 months.

Contributing Factors:

Pairing Revision(s): 7
Hotel Issues: 7
Mx/Wx: 9
Other: 10

Rise in hotel events are causing crews to be fatigued. If there is construction or excessive noise affecting your rest, please contact the front desk, then Duty Officer if unable to rectify. File an InSite report and Fatigue Report as well.

Watching Netflix does not help you sleep. What does help? Reading. According to research, reading 6 minutes or more prior to sleep reduces stress levels 68% (regardless of genre).

Legal does not mean safe. What may look good on paper may not be good for the crewmember. Pairing Revisions are one of the biggest contributors to Fatigue Events. Example: Out-n-back revised in to a hub turn, then crewmember is assigned a follow-on out-n-back. Second Example: Additional leg added to a
week-long Indy night hub turn (cumulative fatigue is causal factor).

File Fatigue Report: According to the FOM 2.05 and CBA 12.A.9.e, it is required to file a Fatigue Report if you are removed from duty or put in to rest due to fatigue.

If you have any questions concerning fatigue, please contact us.

Pat Hagerty
Fatigue Risk Management Chairman

Rob Bassett
Fatigue Risk Management Vice-Chairman

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Retirement and benefits seminars for memphis and cologne bases

MEM Retirement Seminars:

The next available Retirement Counseling Seminars will be held on March 1st and 22nd from 1:00-4:00 p.m. CST at the FDX MEC Office, 1770 Kirby Parkway, Suite 300, Memphis, TN 38138.

The Retirement Seminar is geared towards pilots preparing for retirement providing general information on all pilots’ retirement benefits and the retirement process. While we encourage all pilots to attend the Retirement Seminar, preference will be given to pilots closer to retirement.

For pilots who are unable to attend in person, we will provide access to the seminar via teleconference. In order to streamline the seminars and to ensure the highest level of counseling, we are limiting each seminar to 28 slots. Spouses are welcome to attend. 

To register for a Retirement Counseling Seminar click here. Please be prepared to provide your ALPA member number. Since the seminars fill up quickly, you should register as soon as possible.

CGN Benefits & Retirement Seminar:

The R&I Committee will be holding a Benefits and Retirement Seminars for the CGN-based pilots on Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Location: TBA

Time:

Saturday, March 11, 2017
Benefits Seminar – 8:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Retirement Seminar – 1:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

The Benefits Seminar will provide information on all FedEx and ALPA benefits available to you. The topics will include health care, life, disability, and retirement, among many others. With a focus on the benefit improvements being implemented in 2017. Since all CGN pilots will eventually be required to rotate back to the US and the domestic health plans, this will be a great opportunity to learn about what you can expect.

The Retirement Seminar is geared towards pilots preparing for retirement, providing general information on all pilots’ retirement benefits and the retirement process.

To register for the Retirement Seminar or Benefits Seminar click here.

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committee chairman position open

We are currently posting the position of Strategic Preparedness and Strike Committee (SPSC) Chairman. This position was previously filled by First Officer Mark Durant. Mark will soon upgrade to Captain and he wants to lighten his load a bit so he elected to step down as Chairman of this vitally important position. His resignation reminds us of the exceptional job Mark and his team performed for this pilot group during our last bargaining. The many picketing events they organized nationwide were a complete success. The effort in Memphis including the police escorted bus caravan down I-240 was truly epic. These events solidly demonstrated the unity of our pilot group. If you run into Mark, please be sure and let him know how much the sacrifices that he and his family made for our pilot group are appreciated.

In accordance with the FDX MEC Policy Manual, those pilots who desire to be considered for these positions should submit their resumes to MEC Vice Chairman Captain John Cardaci at John.Cardaci@alpa.org.

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From the Safety Committee

We are pleased to announce that First Officer Doug Howard has been selected as Chair of the Accident Investigation and Aircraft Engineering Committee. Doug has also selected Captains Jim Perry and Norm Maxim to serve as Vice Chairs of the committee.

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from the scheduling committee

Disputed Pairing Process
Since the December 2015 bidpack, there has been a new Disputed Pairing procedure. Many pairings that may have been disputed under the old CBA are now being referred to the Fatigue Event Review Committee (FERC) and ultimately the Fatigue Risk Management Group (FRMG) for analysis.

The FERC consists of two union members and two company members. The new CBA delineates their responsibilities to evaluate disputed pairings:

25.BB.E.5. FRMG Track (Fatigue-Related Disputes Only)

a. If the only underlying rationale for the dispute is based on a fatigue-related concern, the dispute must follow the FRMG track. 

b. The SIG shall transmit to the FERC the written rationale explaining why each pairing should be changed. 

c. The FERC shall analyze the pairing for its impact on pilot alertness. At a minimum this will include the fatigue model output of the Company and Association’s fatigue modeling software.

i. The FERC shall attempt to reach consensus on a recommendation to:

(a) Have the pairing rebuilt; or
(b) Perform data collection on the pairing.

In the past, we have listed the disputed pairings every month in the SIG Notes. If the disputed pairing is sent along the FRMG route, we are unable to list them as per 25.BB.E.5.d.iv: There is no monthly list of disputes published, but there are still disputed pairings.

Pilot fatigue reports and sleep data collection directly aid the FRMG in evaluating pairings. If you feel fatigue was a factor during a trip, we encourage everyone to fill out a fatigue report. If you have any questions concerning fatigue, please feel free to contact Pat Hagerty, ALPA Fatigue Risk Management Chairman or Rob Bassett, ALPA Fatigue Risk Management Vice-Chairman at FedEx-FRMC@alpa.org.

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from the jumpseat and professional standards committees

Jumpseat Etiquette and Courtesy

Remember that jumpseating is a privilege and not a right. The following etiquette guidelines and restrictions should always be observed while exercising jumpseat privileges:

  • Remember, jumpseating as a FedEx ALPA pilot is a privilege requiring professional conduct at all times. While you have indeed earned the privilege, always remember to ask the captain’s permission and offer thanks for the ride, even if occupying a cabin seat. FARs require the captain to know you are on board, and they also establish full, unfettered authority to the PIC in approving all request. When off line, identify yourself as a jumpseater to the flight attendants when boarding. Never let an agent or flight attendant rush you past the cockpit without asking the captain’s permission. Some airlines require non-revenue passengers and jumpseaters to board last and conversely deplane last. This is certainly also appropriate when it comes to boarding and deplaning, including the FedEx crew bus as well. Leave room for the operating crew and their bags first.

  • Remember that you are an additional crew member exercising the privileges of your airman certificate as an off duty pilot. That means that if you are sitting in the flight deck, keep your eyes and ears open. Wear a headset. Follow sterile cockpit rules, but speak up when necessary. Remember to turn off your cell phone as soon as you get in the cockpit, and cease text messaging. Even during cruise, it is best practice while in the cockpit to ask the captain if he/she minds if you read or do a crossword puzzle, etc. Remember, 10,000 feet and below is a sterile cockpit environment (in some cases, above 10,000 feet also) and, as an additional crewmember, reading, talking, etc. are not allowed. Your best behavior ensures jumpseat privileges in the future. Also here at FedEx, the company has carved out the rules for other access, thus allowing persons that normally are not allowed by FAR. This access is still subject to PIC authority/approval. However, you may very well be setting the example for these other categories of people on board the aircraft. Maintain the standard!

  • When off line, if offered a seat in first class by the captain, inform the lead flight attendant of this permission. A first-class seat doesn’t automatically entitle you to the same first class benefits as revenue passengers. If they can accommodate you in first class, do not drink alcoholic beverages. While you are exercising the privileges afforded you by FAR 121.547 or 121.583 (i.e., jumpseating), you are considered an additional crewmember, and the alcohol limitations of FAR 91 apply. Just because you get a seat in the back does not relieve you from this responsibility. Even when in plainclothes, remember that you are still considered an additional crewmember, and you may be required to perform duties in case of unusual or emergency circumstances. It's never about where you sit, it's about how you gain access.

  • Both on and off line, always express your gratitude to the crew when deplaning. No matter how rushed, remember to say “thank you.” Some airlines’ policies are for non-revs (including jumpseaters) to deplane last. Again, stay out of the way of revenue passengers, and provide any assistance, if necessary. Use your best judgment, especially if you stowed your bags farther aft than your seat.

  • Be polite and courteous to operating crew and gate agents. Remember never, ever let them talk you into taking the jumpseat or becoming a jumpseater on a flight for which you are ticketed—no matter how nicely they ask or what type of favor you may think you are doing them. They may even offer you vouchers, but this practice has resulted in putting reciprocal jumpseat agreements in serious jeopardy in the past. The jumpseat belongs to the captain, not the gate agent, not jumpseat admin! It is not just another seat!

  • Finally, you—our pilots are arguably some of the most professional aviators in the world. Our captains deserve the respect they have earned, and you—are all professionals that are charged self policing your behaviors to preserve this time honored safety and security priviledge.

For complete details, questions or concerns, visit your FedEx MEC Jumpseat site here.

Or visit the ALPA Air Safety Organization Jumpseat Committee site here.

And finally, there is a “short brief” in your ALPA calendar/black book.

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from the membership committee

The Membership Committee is pleased to announce another great benefit of ALPA Membership. We have reached an agreement with the Crescent Club in East Memphis. Many of you are already familiar with this club as new hire dinners hosted by FedEx are held there as well as Captain course dinners. Several Memphis-based pilots already take advantage of The Crescent Club because it allows them and their families free dining, golf green fees and fitness facilities at over 200 sister clubs, many in key FDX destinations and within walking distance of many of our layover hotels. FDX ALPA Membership has secured a special rate, which is good for ALPA members and their families. The Initiation Fee has been waived and the monthly dues have been reduced by almost 58% to $100/month. If interested, please contact:

Michaelyn Bradford at 901-684-1010 or email her at michaelyn.bradford@clubcorp.com for more information.

Identify yourself as an ALPA pilot. Pilots who don’t reside in the greater Memphis, TN area can use their crash Pad address or a local Memphis address. Pilots can also look up clubs in their resident city. For a full listing of those clubs, go to clubcorp.com. For LAX and IND based pilots, contact Michaelyn as she might be able to get the same deal for at the SoCal and IND facilities. There are also recipient clubs in CDG and CAN!

**Please be advised that ALPA does not receive any commission from your memberships. This is simply a discount ALPA has negotiated for your benefit and any membership and cost incurred are between the individual member and the Crescent Club.

Please enjoy.

Captain Vic Tansey
FDX ALPA Membership Chairman

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professional pilot - terminal checklist quiz

Professional Pilot magazine has given us permission to reprint their "Terminal Checklist" section of the magazine. Please click here to view the "February 2017 Terminal Checklist."

John Cardaci
MEC Vice Chairman

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Air Facts journal

We recently received permission from Air Facts Journal to forward their online magazine to FedEx pilots. We hope you find this reading enjoyable. Please click here to view more.

Fly safe,

John Cardaci
MEC Vice Chairman

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schwab individual retirement and financial counseling sessions

Memphis:
Date: Thursday, March 16th and Thursday, March 23rd.

Schwab Executive Services Financial Consultants will be available on Thursday to conduct individual Retirement & Financial planning sessions with FedEx ALPA member pilots and their spouses. See the link below for available times. The sessions are free and scheduled for one hour in length. The slots fill up fast, so reserve yours now by clicking here.

Charles Schwab is ALPA’s preferred financial provider. Some of the benefits available for ALPA member pilots from Charles Schwab include complimentary financial planning, low-cost trading, educational online resources, etc. To learn more about the ALPA-Schwab relationship, please visit www.schwab.com/alpa or contact Sylvia Arellano, the lead Executive Services Financial Consultant for FedEx ALPA pilots, directly at (720) 418-4200.

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Industry News

FedEx's New Service Takes Aim at Amazon

Amazon Picks Northern Kentucky as Prime Air Hub

Amazon Will Add 2,700 Jobs at New $1.5B Kentucky Hub

United Parcel Service Earnings Mimic FedEx's

FedEx Bets on Automation as it Prepares to Fend Off Uber and Amazon

FedEx Express to Open Location at Kennedy Space Center

 


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