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The PSA Way: Captain Jose O. Torres Lopez

January 10, 2023

The PSA Way: Captain Jose O. Torres Lopez

We know our customers value getting to their destinations on time. It is a key factor in their experience and whether they want to fly on American in the future, but sometimes delays happen that are out of our control. Recently, Captain Jose O. Torres Lopez communicated that a long delay was ahead and went above and beyond his duty to ensure they understood why and was available to answer their questions. A customer was so impressed by his caring actions, they sent us a message on social media about it. Here is what Captain Torres Lopez shared with us about that day.

Share with us what happened that day:
On the afternoon of Sept. 23, we were operating flight 5075 from BTV (Burlington, VT) to PHL (Philadelphia, PA). As the boarding process began, First Officer Nikhil Patel and I were discussing the possible routes and fuel requirements to make a safe and enjoyable flight for our customers. Once we had the re-route and the wheels-up time from Air Traffic Control (ATC), I gave the “OK” to board. When the boarding process was almost over, we received a message from Dispatch to hold the boarding and deplane because PHL was in a ground stop, and it was going to be at least two and a half to three hours of a delay. I had two great Flight Attendants, Damien Starks and James Henderson III, on board. I told them the situation and said I would make the PA announcement. After coordinating with the gate agent, I did the announcement to inform the passengers of the delay.

What inspired you to take such caring action for our customers on board?

I understand all the stress and anxiety that a missed connection or delay can cause. To alleviate that anxiety, I did the PA announcement from the front of the plane so I could have direct contact with the customers and explain the situation with detail, and what was going to be the possible outcome of the delay. After I was done explaining the situation, I told them we were going to deplane and that I was going to walk down the aisle to answer any questions while the ground personnel took the valet bags off the aircraft.

Your story made quite an impact on those traveling with you on that flight. How does it feel knowing that you made a difference for so many?

It feels really amazing that our customers actually value when the crew is going the extra mile for them. I would like to say “Thank You” in person to the passenger that sent the information. It is important to always treat everyone with respect and integrity. Be a caring crew member.

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