161. Don’t Top Off the Tanks

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Alabama Airlines has notified its pilots to stop off their fuel tanks. Alarmed, pilot Buck Rogers a copy of the memo to Time Magazine, investigated the matter. It discovered that AA was to a 50-percent increase in fuel prices in last year alone. The memo warned pilots to only the amount of fuel into the plane was necessary to reach the destination.
The memo pilots that their primary responsibility was to ensure AA's profits increased every quarter. Topping off the resulted in extra fueling time and extra weight. extra time and weight were reducing company profits. memo concluded with these instructions: turn off the when stuck in long lines on the runways; there is a strong tailwind, turn off all engines and glide; and, wherever it is available, "economy" jet fuel.
Pilots immediately complained, saying that a policy put their lives and the public’s at great risk. Yielding to their complaints, AA pilots to put in an extra ten gallons fuel.
Even with the extra ten gallons, Rogers two near disasters. The first time, his plane out of fuel just as the wheels touched runway. His plane had to be towed to terminal. Rogers received a congratulatory phone call from 's president! The second time, Rogers had to land plane on a freeway, still under construction, 10 short of the Atlanta runway. This time the told him he was making AA look bad. told Rogers to save fuel AND land at airport.
“People have no idea how little AA about their safety,” Rogers said. “Saving fuel is important to management than saving lives.”