- Several Flight Attendants have been injured recently due to older-style B/E Aerospace coffee makers spewing hot coffee and grounds.
- Management denied an AFA request to discontinue using these coffee makers despite the risk to Flight Attendant and passenger safety.
- A formal complaint is being filed with the FAA, and a contractual grievance will be filed against the company.
Over the past several months, at least nine Flight Attendant injuries have been reported, caused by scalding hot coffee and grounds spewing from the brew basket of older-style B/E Aerospace coffee makers on various aircraft. This is an alarming situation that requires immediate attention. It’s suspected that the recent changeover in coffee served onboard, which is packaged differently than the old product, may be contributing to this issue. Management has begun investigating the root cause and has identified some potential solutions to address the problem. However, it will likely take significant time to implement the mitigations fully.
Last week, our Air Safety, Health, & Security Committee (ASHSC) sent management an official request to discontinue using B/E Aerospace coffee makers until physical mitigations can be implemented. Despite the inconvenience this may cause by leaving some aircraft with fewer or no coffee makers to use, the Committee believes that potentially seeing multiple Flight Attendants injured while waiting for long-term fixes is unacceptable. Disappointingly, management denied the request, knowingly putting the physical safety and well-being of employees and passengers at risk for the sake of a few more cups of coffee.
This decision by management is a clear violation of their own core value of “owning safety” and displays a shocking level of negligence. Given the gravity of the situation, we will be taking immediate action by filing a formal complaint with the FAA to escalate the issue. Additionally, our Grievance Committee will file a contractual grievance based on management’s violation of section §25.B of our collective bargaining agreement (“The Company will provide a safe and healthy workplace…”).
Flight Attendant and passenger safety must not be compromised. It’s reckless and unacceptable for management to put Flight Attendants at risk by keeping hazardous coffee makers in operation. Removing these coffee makers from service is the right thing to do and the only responsible action for management to take. It’s our right to work in a safe environment, and we demand that this right be upheld.