Recovery from major WX events

Old Jan 22, 16, 12:35 pm
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Recovery from major WX events

Was wondering, besides staffing extra agents for the call center and at the airport, does DL do anything in terms of flights like adding extra sections to help recover from the huge backlog of pax who had canceled flights or are stranded somewhere?

I've been looking at schedules for routes that got impacted and don't see anything except the normal operations for the next few days. I got impacted but luckily was rerouted... however my original flights were almost full so how do they handle all of those displaced pax?
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Old Jan 22, 16, 12:47 pm
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I have seen extra sections put in, but those tend to be more when just one city gets hit. Two years ago when MCI got snow 2 or 3 days in a row wiping out the schedule I saw something like 10 flights per day the next few days MCI/MSP.

Now with this type of thing, I'm not sure how many extra planes/crews DL has that would be able to make much of an impact. There might be but I'm not In The OCC.

I think what happens is a lot of people that were going to originate from the EC just cxld and get refunded or re schedule for a few weeks/months later. That frees up space for those who are trying to return home.

This is all just what I've noticed from experience I don't have any first hand knowledge about what's done with this type of storm that knocks out 1/3 of the country
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Old Jan 22, 16, 1:17 pm
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Recovering for significant IROPS, especially in multiple cities is not easy. You end up with crews and airplanes in the wrong position. So the schedulers and aircraft routers have to try to put a working schedule back together which is a big challenge. As far as extra sections goes, it just depends what kind of crew/aircraft are available and whether enough demand exists. In this case, since they cancelled so many flights in advance, crewing flights will be a little easier...at least they haven't burned up duty time sitting around airports/ramps/taxiways.
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Old Jan 22, 16, 1:51 pm
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Carriers have cancelled a lot of flights in order not to have their aircraft and crews out of position or stuck in places where they can't move for a few days. They've also offered "weather waivers" as an enticement to get people to cancel or rebook before they get stuck somewhere they don't want to be.

This doesn't solve the problem, but it greatly reduces the number of aircraft, crew and passengers stuck where they don't belong.
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Old Jan 22, 16, 4:46 pm
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DL has pre-positioned key staff such as flight crews at various places. Additionally, they have taken EXPERIENCED deicing staff from unaffected stations such as MSP and moved them to facilities where they'll be needed. They definitely have a coordinated operational plan in place and functioning.
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Old Jan 22, 16, 4:57 pm
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In my experience, it is more common that flights get up-guaged than an extra section gets added. I've seen this happen quite a few times in stations like ORD and MKE when weather hits and flights end up cancelled (for example a few years ago on ORD-ATL, a 764 got subbed in for an M88). Again, this is generally only when one station or a small region is hit. When most of the east coast gets inundated though, the story may play out differently.
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Old Jan 22, 16, 8:22 pm
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Originally Posted by SuperG1955 View Post
DL has pre-positioned key staff such as flight crews at various places. Additionally, they have taken EXPERIENCED deicing staff from unaffected stations such as MSP and moved them to facilities where they'll be needed. They definitely have a coordinated operational plan in place and functioning.
Interesting. I didn't realize that de-icing crews were being moved around in the system.

OTOH, I hope they return to MSP in time for Monday morning, when snow is expected all day.
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Old Jan 23, 16, 6:10 am
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There are a lot of things that DL does that are not blasted out for PR purposes. I was chatting with our son about what effects he storm might have on him since he's based outside the storm path and he gave me a quick fill in on some of the things that were happening "behind the scenes" to prepare for the storm and the recovery.

As one can tell from reading other threads, DL appears to have done a great job so far, especially compared to the other affected carriers.

I wouldn't be concerned about MSP on Monday, it'll be handled. Who knows, they might even send a deicing crews from LAX to help out"
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Old Jan 23, 16, 8:22 am
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This is what Delta is proactively doing

With cancellations in place, Delta’s frontline employees from across the system are working to reaccommodate customers and make sure Sunday’s anticipated operational reset is a smooth one.

Employees from unaffected airports including Cincinnati, Minneapolis, Salt Lake City and Detroit are flying into the storm’s path as part of Delta’s De-ice Go Team to help their colleagues keep airplanes operating safely.
Elsewhere, Friday morning all-hands-on-deck for Reservation Sales teams, with increased staffing in place. With call volumes high, Customer Experience Specialists assisted customers and team members at the Reservations Operations Center and Reservations Network Operations Center to help customers through the reaccommodation process. Delta’s @DeltaAssist Twitter team was busily working to stay connected with customers who use social media as their preferred channel of communication throughout their travels.

Pilot and flight attendants are being strategically positioned across the system to operate flights as soon as the weather passes.
http://news.delta.com/delta-teams-wo...t-coast-braces
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Old Jan 23, 16, 12:23 pm
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U.S carriers don't have much surge capacity. It's not like DL keeps 100 753s sitting around waiting to sub for MD-88s or 738s when weather turns bad. It's not just a matter of extra pilots, either: the pilots need to be where the planes wind up, and qualified on those aircraft.

The U.S. airport network, in a lot of busy hubs, doesn't have much surge capacity, either. It's not like LaGuardia can just start handling 110 departures an hour when the weather clears up and the runsways are ready.

The 'solution' for the passengers on the fully booked flights the OP abandoned is to hope they just don't want to fly in really bad weather. Refund their tickets, or push them into the few empty seats next week.

Nobody wants to pay for a regulatory mandate, something of the form that airlines couldn't sell more than 85% of the seats on any scheduled flight until 24 hours before departure to ensure that there will be seats in the event of flight cancellations from crew absence, mechanicals, or weather. (U.S. state utility regulators routinely demand comparable available surplus for electrical generation capacity, btw, and consumers pay for it in the the rate structures.)

Compare Delta's efforts and performance to JetBlue circa 2014: We just won't even try.

http://www.usatoday.com/story/todayi...tdown/4361203/

JetBlue Airways defended its decision to shut down operations at four major airports for 17 hours this week but said it would compensate the most inconvenienced customers.

In a conference call with reporters Wednesday afternoon, JetBlue's Chief Operating Officer Rob Maruster said the airline decided to suspend almost all flights to protect its aircraft and personnel from freezing temperatures and potential icy conditions on the ground.

The airline grounded almost all planes at New York's JFK and LaGuardia, Newark's Liberty International and Boston's Logan airports from 5 p.m. Monday until 10 a.m. Tuesday morning.

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Old Jan 23, 16, 12:55 pm
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Inside Delta's Command Center

Very interesting video. Its from 2014 or 2015

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Old Jan 23, 16, 12:58 pm
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I guess it's no accident that the DL "GO" advertising video is being shown on aircraft (before movies) this winter.
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