Skift Take

The clamps seem more like PR band aids than devices meant to protect. After American blamed disconnected seats on soda and other spills, it's hard for consumers to trust what they're being told.

American Airlines expanded the use of extra seat clamps to 49 Boeing Co. 767s as a “precautionary measure” after determining that the planes have the same locks as those that came loose in flights on another type of jet.

There haven’t been any “in-flight” incidents affecting customers on the 767 planes and no flights will need to be canceled, AMR Corp.’s American said in an e-mailed statement today. The extra clamps have the same strength as the ones put on seats for 48 of the company’s 757 jets, and the work will be completed by around Oct. 21.

American, based in Fort Worth, Texas, has inspected its entire fleet, it said today, after seat rows in the coach sections of its 757s became wobbly on three flights from Sept. 26 through Oct. 1. Seats were loose enough to shift backward toward the next row, although they never came completely free from the floor, the company has said.

The loose seats have added to the bankrupt carrier’s problem with flight delays, which have caused a 1 percent reduction of capacity that will last through the first two weeks of November. The delays occurred after the airline imposed concessions on pilots and began notifying mechanics of layoffs.

Editors: Ben Livesey, John Lear. To contact the reporter on this story: Thomas Black in Dallas at [email protected]. To contact the editor responsible for this story: Ed Dufner at [email protected].  

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Tags: american airlines, safety

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