NEW YORK Oct 4 American Airlines warned of some
flight delays and cancellations while it works to secure the
seats on 48 of its Boeing 7 5 7 planes after some seats
came loose earlier this week.
The company, whose parent AMR Corp filed for
bankruptcy protection in November, said on Thursday that it
expects the enhancement of locking mechanisms used to secure the
seats to aircraft floors to be completed by Saturday.
American said it is working with the U.S. Federal Aviation
Administration to resolve the issue, which started last Saturday
after a row of seats came loose during a flight.
The flight delays follow a litany of disruptions at the
airline, which is also grappling with labor unrest. American's
pilots were expected to vote to authorize their union to call a
strike this week.
The company has asked its mechanics to pay particular
attention to the seat-lock plunger mechanism that secures the
seat to the aircraft floor, according to an emailed statement
attributed to spokeswoman Andrea Huguely on Thursday.
"Mechanics have begun taking steps necessary to ensure that
no seat can become dislodged from its track," Huguely said.
It will start work on each of the 48 planes when they land
at their next destination, and the planes will then stay on the
ground until the work is completed, the airline said.
The average age of American's 757 fleet is 17 years,
according to the company. Just over 100 of its planes are 757s
but only 48 use the seat model that has caused problems.
The company had said on Oct 1 that it was temporarily
grounding eight planes to investigate problems with seats
discovered on two planes.
On Oct 3, the airline said that an internal investigation
had revealed improperly installed clamps had caused seats to
loosen in six of its aircraft and that it would inspect the
seats in other planes.