Saturday, November 24, 2007

FAA History Lesson -- November 24

Another “twofer” today because...well, because it’s my blog and I can.

From the FAA Historical Chronology, 1926-1996...

”Nov 24, 1971: The first in a series of hijackings involving extortion occurred when a passenger on a flight from Portland to Seattle successfully demanded $200,000 and four parachutes, then parachuted from the rear stairway of the Boeing 727. The hijacker--who used the name Dan Cooper, but became known as D.B. Cooper in the press--was never found. (In Feb 1980, however, tattered bills from his loot were discovered along the Columbia River in Washington.) Another incident involving a demand for ransom and parachutes occurred on Dec 24, 1971, and 17 more extortion attempts on U.S. air carriers were made during the next 6 months. (See Mar 7-9, 1972.) “

And the legend lives on. Speaking of living on...

With the current debate about a “market-based” approach as a cure to over-scheduling the runways by the airlines, this is how complicated it could get. Again, it’s my belief that it’s just a delaying tactic. This could get tied up in courts for years and besides, when you start talking about a place like Atlanta, there is no “market.” The City of Atlanta has a monopoly on commercial airports in Atlanta. They own the only one. Enough. Here’s the history.

From the FAA Historical Chronology, 1926-1996...

”Nov 24, 1993: A group of airlines and their trade associations formally asked DOT or FAA to prohibit Los Angeles officials from implementing a plan to deny airlines access to Los Angeles International Airport because of their refusal to pay higher landing fees. On Nov 30 and Dec 1, FAA Administrator David Hinson and DOT Secretary Federico Peña met with airline representatives and Los Angeles city officials to mediate the dispute. As a result, the airlines agreed to pay the higher fees, retroactive to July 1, while planning to pursue the issue through litigation. The airlines subsequently asked DOT to review the increases in accordance with legislation (see Aug 23, 1994) that provided a means of timely resolution of such disputes. On June 30, 1995, DOT ruled that the increases were largely valid but that the airlines were due a partial refund, a decision that remained under appeal at the end of 1996. ”

Don Brown
November 24, 2007

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