It’s been nine months since American Airline’s announced a firm order of thirty CRJ-900 NextGen aircraft to be operated by PSA Airlines. Beginning with Bombardier’s first delivery in June of 2014, PSA has continued to take delivery of a minimum of two aircraft each month. Also during this time, American Airlines affirmed that PSA is to accept the transfer of 47 CRJ-700s to its growing fleet by the end of 2016.
With a fleet expansion from forty nine to one hundred and twenty six aircraft in a little over two years – where does PSA’s growth stand today? What is involved in the process of PSA’s 900 deliveries?
PSA Airlines has now accepted delivery, and put into service, six CRJ900 NextGen aircraft to date, with its seventh due in less than a week and the eighth arriving in ten days. The delivery schedule calls for seven additional 900s to be turned over to PSA in 2014 and 2015 will continue with three aircraft deliveries month from January to May.
A lot is involved in bringing each of these aircraft into PSA possession and getting them ready for their first revenue flight. An acceptance flight is performed three days prior to delivery, on location, at the assembly plant in Mirabel, Canada. It has PSA personnel on board and is flown by Bombardier pilots to demonstrate the aircraft’s systems, functions and airworthiness. The acceptance flight’s results are then shared among the many participating parties- American Airlines, PSA, Bombardier, Customs and Border Protection and the FAA- who will then discuss any potential issues and the corrective action required to bring the aircraft up to American and PSA’s specifications.
After one last thorough inspection of the brand new cabin interior and a confirmation that any issues found on the acceptance flight are resolved, American takes financial ownership from Bombardier- typically by 10 am the day of delivery. Approximately three days later, the delivery flight, which involves various paperwork and about two weeks of preparation in personnel alignment, pilot placement, and Customs procedures, embarks on the one hour and forty five minute flight from the Bombardier facility to Dayton, Ohio where it is accepted and cleared through Customs and Border protection. Once PSA receives each aircraft, Entry into Service (EIS) processes and go-go in-flight wifi installation take five to six days to complete.
“It’s a very rewarding experience to be involved in this interesting and important process with PSA. It’s definitely exciting to watch that brand new airplane land and know what a representation the aircraft becomes of the dedication and hard work that many employees across US Airways, American Airlines and PSA have contributed to the future of air travel and to see the entire process come full circle as the aircraft begins its life serving thousands of future customers.” – Ryan Rust, PSA Airlines Delivery Coordinator
See more pictures of 900 deliveries on PSA’s Flickr Page.
PSA has officially begun the journey towards an entire American Eagle livery with the completion of our first US Airways Express re-branding into the new AA livery. PSA Airlines is in the process of sending each of their 14 aircraft from their current CRJ 700 fleet to be stripped of the US Airways Express paint and re-painted in the American Eagle livery.
The first of these aircraft was sent to be painted on August 30th. The entire fleet of 700s is anticipated to be painted by late January of 2015.
Each aircraft is sent to Indianapolis individually. They undergo a stripping and sanding process to remove every inch of the old paint. Then 55 pounds of paint- primer, paint and clear coat- is added. The entire process takes 8 days to complete.
Be sure to view photos from the whole process on PSA’s Flickr Here
“American will begin transferring 47 Bombardier CRJ-700 aircraft from Envoy to PSA, allowing each airline to more efficiently focus their operations on a single aircraft type –Embraer aircraft at Envoy and Bombardier aircraft at PSA. Consolidating our fleets will lower costs for American Airlines Group and simplify the regional feed for our mainline operations.” – Kenji Hashimoto, senior vice president – regional carriers
Beginning mid-2015, PSA will commence the induction of the 47 additional Bombardier CRJ-700s, further expanding its fleet of Bombardier jets. While the exact dates and the rate at which these planes will transfer to PSA are not yet determined, the transfer of aircraft from Envoy is anticipated to be complete by the end of 2016.
To date, PSA has taken delivery of 6 of the 30 Bombardier CRJ 900 NextGen aircraft, previously awarded by American Airlines. Delivery of these aircraft will continue at a rate of 2 to 3 aircraft a month until completion in mid 2015- when the transfer of these CRJ-700s will commence. Consequently, PSA’s current rate of hiring for regional pilots, flight attendants, A&P mechanics, and other positions will persist throughout 2016 to allow for the continued expansion of the airline. To see current PSA opportunities, visit http://bit.ly/1obVLuk.