Air Safety, Health, & Security Committee (ASHSC)
- Our AFA Air Safety, Health, & Security Committee (ASHSC) Chairpersons met on Thursday, January 5 to discuss their ongoing program of work to represent Flight Attendants interests related to safety, health, and security in our workplace.
- The Committee also met with management to receive updates and discuss issues and problems that Flight Attendants are facing onboard the aircraft.
- Reporting safety concerns is more important than ever given the challenges we are currently facing as a work group. Flight Attendant Irregularity Reports (FAIR), Aviation Safety Action Reports (ASAP), and fatigue reports can all be filed through Report It! Please contact a member of your Local ASHSC if you need assistance.
On Thursday, January 5, our AFA Local Air Safety, Health, & Security Committee (ASHSC) Chairpersons met to discuss their ongoing work to represent our Flight Attendants and push for improvements in our workplace. Representing you at the meeting were Debi Wallstrom (ANC), David Lake (SEA), Blair Kimball (PDX), Brad Young (SFO), Carin Meritt (LAX), and Eva Gatus (SAN). Also present were MEC ASHSC Air Quality Representative Yvette Satterlee and MEC ASHSC Chairperson Seth Heiple. The committee met with Cabin Safety Manager Cari Smith-Allen, Director of Inflight Training & Standards Thomas Kaminski, Inflight Reporting Coordinator Kevin Weatherbie, Director of Inflight Safety & Compliance Corey Chestnut, Interim Manager of Inflight Policy & Procedure Johanna Giese, Manager of Inflight Policy & Procedure Kaliko Howell, and Senior Inflight Safety & Data Specialist Claudia Modl from management.
Topics of Discussion
The committee reviewed a number of items when meeting with management. Some items discussed include:
- Announcements changed from
“must” to “should” when telling passengers to unplug from seat power. Management agreed to change this back to “must”.
- Requested more timely notification of possible air quality events so AFA can provide timely support.
- Location of the onboard wheelchair. The Company won’t be able to change the location of the onboard wheelchair, but management has agreed to look at the feasibility of moving liquid supplies out of the centerline overhead bin so possible leakage doesn’t damage other supplies and soak the onboard wheelchair case.
- Boarding should be at D-40, but SEA boards at D-43. Inflight management has been working with the SEA station on this issue. Company policy is that boarding starts at D-40 at all stations and SEA is not an exception. The ASHSC has asked Inflight to change the prebuilt replies in Block2Block team messaging to the “Are you ready to board” question to state “we are ready to board at D-40”, so is no confusion about the intent responding.
- Flying after an inflight emergency or medical. When a situation occurs where Section 15 of the contract applies, management who are in contact with Flight Attendants after the event should clearly communicate that a trip drop with pay protection, but without points, is available. This allows Flight Attendants to make the safest choice for themselves and the operation without having to worry about personal consequences.
- ANC Airport parking lot and ice removal. Inflight safety and compliance management will reach out to ANC base management to see if they can help address the issues.
- Immediate assistance during irregular ops/emergencies. Inflight needs to utilize additional resources to help with hotels and transportation and other issues which can be handled outside of scheduling so Flight Attendants are not waiting in situations that may not be safe.
- Trash odors in Galley 1 on the 737 MAX. The trash compartments are supposed to be cleaned on every RON. The Committee has asked for an audit of this process as there are still reports of issues with odors in trash areas caused by the design of the F/C trash opening/chute, which allows some waste placed in the receptacle to fall outside of the trash can.
- Trays in Galley 4-2 continue to be in the wrong location. Trays can fall out and cause injury. A fix was implemented on December 6 by Catering, but it needs more attention since there are reports of the issue still occurring.
- Tray tables on the A321 can block access to the B Flight Attendant jumpseat. Even if this is an allowable configuration, the Committee doesn’t believe it is safe and would like it addressed.
- Ice cleats. Concerns with passengers wearing them onboard the aircraft as they could damage the aircraft interior.
What the Committee is Working On
- Bed Bug Exposure Protocol. Together with the Hotel Committee, working towards the adoption of an exposure protocol so Flight Attendants and management will know how to respond when bed bug exposure has been confirmed.
- Time for Equipment Checks and Briefings. The ASHSC continues to advocate for an adequate amount of time to complete checks and briefings prior to passenger boarding.
- Launching the Line Operations Safety Audit (LOSA) Program. Continuing to work with the other members of the LOSA Steering Committee to launch the LOSA Program. A total of 36 peer LOSA Observers have been selected, representing all the bases. The first round of observations will occur from January 27 to February 28. We expect the deidentified data generated from the observations will result in improvements to policy and procedure, the safety of our work environment, and the quality of our training.
We Want to Hear From You!
If you’ve experienced a safety-related issue, please help the committee to advocate for improvement and change by filing a report. Flight Attendant Irregularity Reports (FAIR), Aviation Safety Action Program (ASAP) reports, and fatigue reports can all be submitted using ReportIt! If you’re not sure what type of report to file for a particular situation or need help, please don’t hesitate to contact a member of your Local ASHSC.
Do you have other feedback for the committee or items that you’d like brought up with management? Please let us know! Your Local ASHSC is your voice to management. You can find our contact information on the ASHSC page of the AFA Alaska website.