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View Full Version : Will never fly Delta again!


DaddyOD
07-03-2009, 07:32 PM
Here is an example that shows how poorly managed Delta has become.


I strongly suggest those reading this consider that other carriers are not this poorly manged and you DO have a choice who to fly with. It is up to us the consumers to send a strong message to these corporate executives that we are not going to take this any more!


My wife and I (were suppose to) travel on the following flight on June 25th, 2009: Flight: Delta 379 Departs:5:40 pm from Atlanta, Georgia Arrives:7:50 pm at Nassau, Bahamas.

We have travelled all over the world on many carriers. The experience we had on this Delta flight was so poor that if given a choice we will never fly on Delta again.

In summary, we were delayed over 5 hours after spending close to 4 hours waiting on the plane and another 1 hour waiting in the terminal.

It is understandable if a system maintenance check is required however the whole process was bungled and the ineptitude demonstrated was intolerable and caused many people to fear for own safety and resulted in some leaving the plane.

After being delayed and switched terminals and planes twice, the passengers sat on the plane for hours hearing one excuse after the other for the delays.

Then when they attempted to start the engines the power abruptly failed. They announced (in broken English like we were in a third world country) that they were "sorry about the 'bad' problems on the other planes..." and that they "did not power the plane properly", inferring they did not know what they were doing.


They tried to say that it was something to do with the air conditioning and they should have been connected to the AC power when they tried to start the engines. It was a very poor, distressing explanation from an unskilled crew member.
After many hours and after other excuses like "the crew had to leave" and "we need to get another set of pilots..." and after some passengers left in fear we finally took off. To our dismay and trepidation we could smell smoke in the cabin. We also saw several fire trucks with their lights on. Again no explanation from the flight crew.

If given the choice I will never fly Delta again nor as the President of a company that flies often I will never do business with Delta again.

It is a sad testimony on how the quality and service in the airline industry on some carriers fallen to levels not seen in my 37 years of air travel.

This is NOT the case on Southwest or Continental to name a couple carriers whose service and quality is far superior to Deltas. Deltas quality WAS better than average for many years but their poor management has resulted in further worsening their financial condition, quality and service.

PHXFlyer
07-03-2009, 08:50 PM
As this was a mechanical delay, you should request compensation. Have you tried contacting Delta about this issue or are you just going to vote with your feet and walk? If you decide to contact Delta I would recommend a written letter (snail mail) that is to the point, factual (which your post is) and free from emotion, opinion, and extraneous detail. Tell them that their service fell short of your expectations and ask them what they are willing o do to possibly win your business back. I would suggest omitting the fact that you are the president of your company and the potential loss of business due to that fact. After all as the president of your company wouldn't you agree that if given a choice between Delta and a competitor where all other factors (departure/arrival time, total travel time, etc) were relatively equal and Delta had a lower fare would you not choose Delta? After all, the bottom line is the bottom line and although mechanical delays do occur they are, percentage wise, not a common occurrence.

You mentioned in your post that you've been traveling for 37 years. Was this the first significant delay you've ever experienced? If so, you should count yourself extremely lucky! I have been traveling all of my life but more so in the past 10 years and have experienced several mechanical delays and cancellations. You accused the Delta mechanics of being inept and stated they did not know what they were doing. How could you know this for sure? Are you a trained A&P mechanic? Do you hold FAA certification? I'm not trying to be accusatory. I too have been an "armchair mechanic" in your situation.

I remember once on Continental (yes, one of the carriers you singled out as superior to Delta and I do share your opinion) as the aircraft was nearly boarded we got the "good afternoon ladies and gentlemen" announcement from the flight deck. Sure enough they found something during the pre-flight check that needed replacing. "No problem, we just need to plug a new one in. It's a modular unit and we have them in stores here so we should be underway and will probably make up the delay in flight." After the third unit of whatever it was failed, the captain anounced we would be deplaning because we now had to wait for a replacement part to be flown in from Seattle. We were in Phoenix. I knew after their first attempt when the new unit failed that there was probably some underlying cause for the malfunction. After all when a light bulb blows out and you replace it only to have the replacement blow too wouldn't a reasonable person suspect some sort of electrical problem with the fixture or wiring? However, I'm not a mechanic nor have I ever portrayed one on TV (10 points for anyone who recognizes that reference) and I figure as long as the issue is fixed before we get in the air they can take as long as they need.

Jetliner
07-04-2009, 06:38 AM
Then when they attempted to start the engines the power abruptly failed. They announced (in broken English like we were in a third world country) that they were "sorry about the 'bad' problems on the other planes..." and that they "did not power the plane properly", inferring they did not know what they were doing.


They tried to say that it was something to do with the air conditioning and they should have been connected to the AC power when they tried to start the engines.

The issue would be with the APU which supplies power and air conditioning to the aircraft on the ground if they don't use the ground power and external A/C. The APU also provides air to start the engines. In a jet engine, air is pumped in to get them to start spinning. They don't hit the fuel until the engines are about 1/2 to 2/3 idle RPM. If the APU is not functioning (which happens quite bit) then they use an Air Start. It provides the air pressure to start the engine. If the power suddenly went out, it's because one of the ground crew cut the ground power too soon - either by accident or he/she got stupid.

Here's the part where I'm going to call BS to the rest of your story.

To our dismay and trepidation we could smell smoke in the cabin. We also saw several fire trucks with their lights on. Again no explanation from the flight crew.

Sorry, but there is no possible way that the tower would have let the plane take off if the fire trucks had to be out there like that. Also, the smell of smoke---that would be jet exhaust from other aircraft. You can't tell me that in 37 years of flying you've never smelled that before. The plane is not pressurized on the ground.

justme
07-16-2009, 08:18 AM
Jetliner makes some good points about the APU and is very likely to be the true cause of the sudden loss of power. As for the "broken english" explanation, I'm not sure I'm buying it. The flights to the Bahamas would have no need for a foreign language speaker, so there would be no reason for broken english in the literal sense. More likely is the case that the flight attendant, or even the captain, weren't quite sure how to explain what was going on because they themselves aren't trained ramp agents. It would be like me trying to explain how to do brain surgery to you over the phone. As for the smoke smell, it is very likely that there was a smell of fuel or exhaust inside the airplane if in fact an airstart was used. The airstart is itself basically a jet engine that has an exhaust hose that hooks up to the airplane to help start the engines. It's blowing exhaust straight into the airplane because the same hose and hook-up, and internal piping is connected to the air conditioning system. It is very common to have that smell inside the airplane when an airstart is used. Fire trucks, especially at an airport as large as ATL are also a very common sight. I doubt they had anything to do with your flight. Jetliner is also correct when he says that there is no way the tower would have let you take off if the fire trucks had anything to do with you.

oh my
07-20-2009, 12:09 AM
I have to agree with the last 2 posts. The exhaust from the APUs (and especially air-starts, if one was used) is pretty stinky.

As for the explanation you were given in "broken english," maybe the crew was trying to dumb it down as much as possible for the people not familiar with airplane mechanics (kinda like when the doctor has to explain in layman terms what is happening in your body when you don't understand the medical terminology). I know the pilots and flight attendants sometimes have trouble explaining exactly what the maintenance problem is. Particularly when they're only privy to what the mechanics tell them. There are also some pilots that just don't have the people skills to articulate what the problem is. I remember years ago hearing about how some airline was supposedly going to send their pilots to public speaking seminars to help them better comminicate with the flying public. Don't know if it was really true or not.

Now to the maintenance issues on the (i'm thinking?) numerous a/c you were to take...I understand that you were delayed for what you consider an extensive ammount of time. I also understand that you feel the excuses and explanations you received were, essentially, unacceptable. If the situation was that "intolerable," why not just ask to go the next day? With maintenance issues that incur a delay, I have no problem when someone tells me they'd rather just go tomorrow, or on a later flight. As long as there are seats available, I'd change you, no questions asked. You even said some passengers chose to get off. You must have thought getting to the Bahamas that night, on whatever plane you could, was better than delaying your trip, possibly a whole day. And as far as I can tell, you reached Nassau SAFELY. So the situation was tolerable. Unfortunate, but tolerable.


It is a sad testimony on how the quality and service in the airline industry on some carriers fallen to levels not seen in my 37 years of air travel.


Thirty-seven years ago, you would have had:
1. fewer people flying
2. fewer airline choices to get you to Nassau
3. a way more expensive ticket (in comparison to the cost of living)
4. higher paid agents who usually had to "know" someone to even get an interview with an airline.
Each year that has passed since then has resulted in a little more desintegration of the entire process. Right now, flying on pretty much any carrier, you get the service of a fast food restaurant. You can't expect filet mignon for $5 when you roll up to McDonalds. The employees of every airline are doing the best they can with what they are given, most of the time. Notice i said MOST of the time.