October 22, 2020                                                                                                                                                                 20-57

New Scope Concerns: 76-Seat Aircraft Fleet Cap

Last week, ALPA received data raising serious questions about whether the Company has complied with new 76-seat aircraft restrictions that were triggered when Compass Airlines shut down and left Delta pilots without the furlough protection that would have been afforded by their right to flow down to Compass under Letter of Agreement (LOA) #9 of our Pilot Working Agreement (PWA).

From Flow Down to RJ Fleet Reduction

Under Section 1 B. 47. f. Exception two of the PWA, when Compass flow down rights ceased to be available to Delta pilots, the fleet cap on DCI 76-seat “permitted aircraft” was automatically reduced by 35, from 223 to 188. In other words, Delta can no longer use more than 188 76-seat airframes in its DCI operations.

Delta-Reported Status of 76-Seaters as of Aug. 2020

The Company’s most recent compliance report identified 186 76-seat aircraft being used to perform DCI operations as of August 31, 2020. The Company-furnished report, however, was incomplete, missing important information. The Scope Committee, using verifiable data obtained from other sources, discovered at least 12 76-seat aircraft that were not included in the Company’s report but that nevertheless appear to have flown for DCI in the last several months—some as recently as this week. If verified, that would mean the Company has performed DCI operations with at least 10 airframes that are not “permitted aircraft” under the PWA. 
In a memo sent to pilots today, SVP John Laughter stated that Delta’s regional partners “flew only 167 lines of 76-seater flying as they worked to provide feed from smaller markets.” Regardless, the PWA specifically addresses the permitted number of airframes – not lines of flying.

Apparent 76-Seat RJ Status Since August 2020

Any DCI flying by a jet that is not a “permitted aircraft” violates our Scope Clause. ALPA takes these apparent PWA violations very seriously—not least because the limit in question was specifically intended to safeguard Delta pilots’ denied flow down rights in the face of looming furloughs.

The Association issued a “cease and desist” demand on October 14, 2020, and is actively pursuing the information necessary to assess Company compliance and ensure that Delta fully honors its PWA obligations going forward.


This is a product of the Delta MEC Communications Committee
Air Line Pilots Association, International