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DOT Must Address Unsafe Aircraft Cabin Temperatures

U.S. Department of Transportation
Docket Operations, M-30
West Building Ground Floor
Room W12-140
1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
Washington, DC 20590

             RE:     Air Cabin Temperatures, Petition for Rulemaking
                         Docket No. DOT-OST-2018-0097

On behalf of the Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO (TTD), I am writing today to express our support for the petition for rulemaking filed by the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA, which requests that DOT establish operational standards for cabin temperatures on commercial airplanes, both on domestic flights and international flights into the United States and its territories.

Attached is a policy statement in support of the petition, adopted unanimously on September 12, 2018 at a meeting of TTD’s Executive Committee.[1] The Executive Committee consists of representatives of 32 affiliate unions representing workers in all modes of transportation, including those who represent flight crewmembers.[2]

As our statement outlines, dangerous temperatures in the cabin are more than just an inconvenience. Extreme heat and cold can threaten the health and safety of passengers and present an unsafe work environment for crewmembers. Several recent high-profile news stories have highlighted some of the dire consequences of uncontrolled temperatures, and flight attendants and pilots across the country continue to report unsafe situations due to extreme temperatures.

Therefore, we ask that DOT take affirmative action in the form of a rulemaking to address this issue and establish operational temperature standards. By regulating this matter, DOT can prevent troubling incidents reported by passengers and crew alike and eliminate an unnecessary safety risk to commercial passenger aviation.

We thank DOT for considering our request and hope to work with the Department on the promulgation of a much-needed regulation.

Sincerely,
Larry I. Willis
President

[1] Attached at 1 is a policy statement, Common Sense Regulations on Aircraft Cabin Temperatures, adopted by TTD’s Executive Committee in September 12, 2018.

[2] Attached at 2 is a complete list of TTD’s 32 affiliate unions.

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