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Flight Attendant Says She Can Understand What Happened To Colleague

Judlyne Lilly, NewsRadio 1080 KRLD Austin Bureau
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AUSTIN (KRLD) – One flight attendant says the incident aboard an American Airlines Jet at DFW on Friday could have happened to anybody.

When word came of the attendant’s rant about the plane crashing, veteran flight attendant Heather Poole said she suspects there was an underlying reason for the woman’s behavior.

Poole says many airline flight crews are on edge, simply because they’re worried about their jobs and their pensions.

KRLD’s Judlyne Lilly Reports:

Poole is a flight attendant for an airline she will not name.

She’s also an author, and has written a book about her work called ‘Cruising Attitude.’

In the book, she says that members of the flight crew can also be fined for delays, which is why the most stressful time for flight attendants is during boarding. They’re trying to get passengers in buckled in as fast as possible to get the plane off the ground on time.

In addition to worrying about their jobs and pensions, flight attendants still have to keep smiling.

Poole says the smile is there despite the fact that passengers don’t often reciprocate. She says many flight attendants will go all day without passengers speaking to them, and sometimes flight attendants don’t feel like smiling.

She adds for the most part, being a flight attendant is a good and exciting job, except when job security and pensions are threatened. That’s when attitudes change which spills over into how happily or not they do their jobs.

While American Airlines is so far still flying, it’s talking about laying off 13,000 people and wants labor concessions from unions.

Poole says the lack of job security can be troubling to pilots, flight attendants and other flight workers.

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