PSA pilots ratify agreement with at least 30 large regional jets

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Pilots at US Airways-subsidiary PSA Airlines ratified an amended agreement today that includes the addition of at least 30 large regional jets.

The 471 pilots at the Dayton, Ohio-based regional carrier voted 61% in favour of the 10-year agreement with nearly 90% of pilots voting, according to the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA).

The agreement is contingent on American Airlines and US Airways closing their merger by 31 December 2015. The US Department of Justice (DOJ) has challenged the deal in a case that will be heard by the US District Court for the District of Columbia on 25 November.

“We are very pleased that our professional pilots have voted to ratify the letter of agreement that provides a clear path for career advancement for them while, at the same time, positions PSA Airlines for future success in a highly competitive industry," says Keith Houk, president and chief executive of PSA, in a statement.

Jesse Coeling, chairman of ALPA’s PSA master executive council, adds: “These agreements secure substantially enhanced opportunities for our pilots to progress to our mainline partner and job protections for them here at PSA, while also protecting the core of our compensation and work rules.”

PSA would receive the new 76-seat regional jets from an order that American is currently negotiating with Bombardier and Embraer. The Fort Worth-based carrier is considering buying about 60 Bombardier CRJ900 and Embraer 175 aircraft, however, the DOJ case has delayed the deal.

American first offered the aircraft to the pilots at its regional subsidiary American Eagle Airlines, however, the American Eagle ALPA master executive council rejected the offer due to its inclusion of lower B scale compensation for new hires.