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American Air signs deal to outsource some flying

Associated Press Published: September 12, 2012
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NEW YORK (AP) — American Airlines has signed a deal with SkyWest Inc. to do some of its regional flying.

Under the deal announced Wednesday, SkyWest will operate 23 Bombardier regional jets under the American Eagle banner. It currently expects flights to start on Nov. 15, with the full fleet up and running by spring. Most of them will be out of Los Angeles International Airport and Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport.

About half are expected to be flown by SkyWest Airlines while the rest will be operated by sister carrier ExpressJet Airlines. The contract has a four-year term.

Last week, a federal judge threw out the union contract of American Airlines pilots. Bankruptcy law lets companies throw out contracts if they show it's necessary for a successful turnaround.

Pilots had opposed letting non-American Airlines pilots operate flights like they do at other major U.S. airlines.

AMR Corp., the parent company of American Airlines and American Eagle, asked a federal bankruptcy judge on Friday to let it cancel contracts covering mechanics, dispatchers and ground school instructors. Eagle and American, which have been operating under bankruptcy protection since November, are seeking concessions from employees to reduce labor costs.

SkyWest, which is based in St. George, Utah, operates as United Express, Delta Connection and US Airways Express among others.