By Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren / Published April 18, 2014
Thank-goodness it’s Flyday…err Friday, everyone! In this week’s edition the 737 hits 8,000, epic Twitter fails, American Eagle becomes Envoy, and more…
8000: Boeing delivered its 8,000th 737 this week. United was the lucky winner, taking home a brandy-new 737-900ER. The plane has a small sticker on the starboard side to mark the milestone. The event was celebrated in an employee only event in Renton.
The airplane has been produced at a blistering clip since it hit the 5,000th airplane in 2006. Just for scale, the 4,000th delivery took place in 2001. The 2,000th? February 1991.
Swapped: The Wall St Journal reports that Jet Airways has ordered 17 737 MAX jets, swapping them with an existing order for standard 737-800 airplanes. It is the second MAX order from an Indian carrier, following a healthy order for 42 from SpiceJet.
If you recall from a previous article we ran on the Envoy name change, American Eagle existed both as a subsidiary regional airline under the umbrella of American, and as a brand name that multiple regional carriers operated on behalf of American. Thus American Eagle the brand is operated by American Eagle the airline as well as Republic, SkyWest, and Expressjet among others. Confused? Thought so.
The name change to Envoy is meant to clear some of that confusion up, and thus only extends to the American owned regional subsidiary. Which means the airplanes will continue operating for American Eagle the brand, but as Envoy instead of American Eagle the airline. They’ll now have a cute little sticker affixed to the fuselage declaring their new corporate affiliation. Envoy will remain a part of American Airlines Group, though it is facing downsizing as a result of sour labor negotiations.
Dinged: A380s faced a handful of incidents this week. First, a Korean Air jet struck two light poles at Los Angeles LAX on Wednesday. The thirty foot poles were bent over, damaging the wing slightly. Meanwhile, an Emirates A380 rolled up a little too close to the gate in Toronto. An engine was damaged when the airplane hit the jetbridge, and replacement parts had to be brought in.
Hawaiian Airlines to Beijing: Hawaiian launched thrice weekly flights between its Honolulu hub and Beijing. In addition, the carrier also began a codeshare agreement with Air China. That extends the carriers reach to Air China connecting flights from Beijing to Hangzhou, Guangzhou, Shanghai, and Shenyang. Air China, meanwhile, adds connecting Hawaiian traffic to several of the islands.
The week started with a Dutch girl threatening American Airlines with an apparently faux bomb threat. She claimed she was from Al Qaida and had big plans for June 1st. American responded, stating they had her IP address and that details were sent to the FBI and security, then went silent.
She freaked out, claiming it was all a joke. The joke sort of wound up on her, as she was later arrested for it. Unfortunately the incident apparently spurred a ton of copy-cat incidents from equally idiotic teens.
Thing escalated quickly when, on Monday, US Airways inadvertently posted an extremely inappropriate image—and we can’t stress the phrase extremely inappropriate enough—on their feed, where it remained for an entire hour. The post ground every other conversation on Twitter to a halt as it went viral, prompting slack-jawed stares followed by an endless stream of RTs and snappy one-liners. It quickly spread beyond the Twittersphere, like wildfire, to the interwebz as a whole. I remain convinced that some academic who studies workplace productivity on a national scale will indeed discover a measurable decrease.
We won’t be posting the image here, and we imagine by now that if you’ve heard about this you’ve already either seen it or made the far more wise decision of averting thine eyes.
Needless to say, after such an epic mistake, one that was instantly (and pretty rightfully) labeled the worst mistake ever made on Twitter by a major brand, we thought head(s) would roll.
But they didn’t. US Airways owned up to the mistake pretty much instantly. After an investigation, it explained that the image was first posted on by someone else to its account. The offending photograph was flagged for removal, but instead was accidentally attached to a customer response and well, the rest is already is already well known. The company announced later in the week that since it was an honest, albeit terrible, mistake, no one would be fired.
And I’m glad. Honest mistakes happen, and giving grace is often far more powerful than trotting out the ax.
Inquiry: Oddly enough, inquiries for US Airways 777 models are up 2,000% nationwide, we’re told.
Finally, we turn your attention to a video from LOT Polish, which recently painted one of its Embraer 170 aircraft to a retro livery to celebrate its 85th anniversary. The airplane looks pretty sweet.
Enjoy the video, it’s pretty sweet.
In case you missed it, Airchive had a lot of great coverage right here. This week’s stories: