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The [Friday] Papers

"Federal aviation inspectors stepped up oversight of United Continental Holdings Inc. two months ago, citing risks from repeated violations of mandatory pilot qualification and scheduling requirements," the Wall Street Journal reports.

The Federal Aviation Administration's decision was spelled out in a Feb. 6 letter from a high-ranking agency official to United's top safety officer.

The letter, which called for a thorough overhaul of parts of United's process for qualifying crew members, represents the most detailed indication yet of FAA worries about United's internal safety oversight.

Well, maybe this is a routine sort of thing.

That warning in January was prompted by four recent and separate "safety events and near misses."

Oh.

Uh-oh.

"The FAA letter is unusual because the airline previously reported each of the problems on its own. Such disclosures long have been encouraged by the FAA as a way to unearth budding safety problems and have the carriers voluntarily fix them. Airlines and pilots who file such reports typically avoid enforcement actions or other adverse moves by regulators."

In this case, according to the FAA letter, voluntary reports of 12 apparent violations in 13 months stemming "from the same or similar set of circumstances" indicate a "systemic" hazard, requiring United to conduct "a complete review of your processes associated with crew member qualification" and develop an "action plan . . . to mitigate this hazard."

As a result, the FAA stopped accepting additional voluntary disclosures involving those issues, Hugh Thomas, the agency's principal operations inspector for United, told Michael Quiello, United's vice president for safety, in the letter.

Here's Quiello on LinkedIn - you know, in case he's on the market soon.

From ABC News in February:

"United Airlines officials recently sent a 'brutally honest' safety bulletin to pilots following four incidents involving flight crew errors that were classified as 'major safety events and near-misses.'

"The Jan. 9 message obtained by ABC News was sent by Howard Attarian, senior vice president of flight operations, and Mike Quiello, vice president of corporate safety. The Wall Street Journal first reported about the message."

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"'No pun intended, but great safety performance is no accident,' Quiello says, without cracking a smile."

Whacking Walgreens Workers
"If Stefano Pessina felt any opening-night jitters during his inaugural earnings conference call as boss of Walgreens Boots Alliance, they didn't show," Joe Cahill writes for Crain's.

"He got Wall Street's version of rave reviews, as Walgreens shares jumped nearly 6 percent after yesterday's confab with analysts to an all-time closing high of $92.62 a share. The Italian billionaire who merged his European drug company with what had been Walgreen last year took over as acting CEO Jan. 1 after elbowing out Greg Wasson."

Well, gee, that sounds like good news.

"Pessina's words gave analysts an even greater thrill. He said things Wall Street wanted to hear from his predecessor but never did.

"He grabbed his audience early by announcing another $500 million in planned cost cuts, a 50 percent increase over the $1 billion Wasson offered last year. Wasson's target disappointed many analysts, who thought Walgreens' had more fat to cut."

Uh oh.

"Start updating those resumes, Walgreens workers."

Ricketts Family Not Rich Enough
File suit against magazine peddler.

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All items today via Crain's!

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Obama Sells More Arms Than Any President Since WWII
That includes Reagan and George W. Bush - even adjusted for inflation.

Midland Awards: The Pill, The Eastland & Amnesia
Plus: WWI's bravest dog & the Freedom Summer murders.

The Chicago Murder News
Perpetuating a dastardly myth.

The Cubs' Opening Week On Deadspin
From clown show to shitshow and back again.

Beachwood Photo Booth: International Window Lady
Leather source.

The Week In Chicago Rock
Featuring: Polica, Happyness, MINES, The Suffers, Psychomancer, The Ting Tings, Ravyn Lenae, Black Pistol Fight, Hauschka, Rachele Eve, Laura Joy, The Waco Brothers, Vallenfrye, The Plain White Ts, Electric Wizard, Trees, Escapist, At The Gates, and the Kasey Burton Band.

The Beachwood Radio Sports Hour: Wither Chicago
Bulls, Blackhawks, White Sox, Cubs all in trouble. Plus: Wither College Basketball. And: Chicago Fire Did Something This Week.

The Beachwood Radio News Hour
Is in pre-production!

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TweetWood
A sampling.

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Also: "Don't ever lie. Unless you're running for governor."

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The Beachwood Tip Line: Discolored.



Permalink

Posted on April 10, 2015


MUSIC - PJ Harvey Wins Pitchfork.
TV - 24 Hours With Velocity.
POLITICS - Reminder: U.S. Health Care Sucks.
SPORTS - World Roller Derby Day.

BOOKS - Trump's True Believers.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - Land After Frac Sand.


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