According to a recent lawsuit filed by American Airlines Group Inc. (NASDAQ: AAL), ongoing ‘slowdowns’ by its mechanics will disrupt the travel plans of about 3,400 more passengers each day during the summer months. This will be a major inconvenience for the affected US air passengers who may have to reschedule flights and hotel bookings during the summer months.
The ‘slowdown’ has been going on since February and has so far caused 1,500 maintenance delays and 650flight cancellations, which could cripple the airline if the situation worsens. A similar situation was recently resolved by Southwest Airlines, which reached an agreement in principle with its mechanics who were also on a go-slow for several months.
The airline believe this is an illegal negotiation tactic given that it has been in talks with mechanics unions for several years on labor-related issues. Most airlines have been operating with lower margins for years given higher fuel prices and this has made it very difficult for the management teams to effect salary and benefit hikes.