Unhappy handlers at Houston
A number of employees at the Houston-based handler Servisair have filed a federal lawsuit, saying that they’ve been cheated out of pay.
The lawsuit accuses Servisair of intentionally rounding down employee hours worked in the company’s favor. It also claims that the handler did not reimburse employees who worked during their lunch hours and that the handler has made use of a time-keeping system that automatically reduces time worked for its employees at more than 20 airports around the country. The suit seeks class action status to represent the entire group and it is estimated that each employee has lost around five hours’ overtime per week since 2010, and possibly earlier.
The lawsuit accuses the company of deducting 30 minutes each day from workers’ timecards for lunches that were not taken. It further alleges that the company manipulated its time-keeping software system by rounding up start times. Overall, those pressing the suit believe that some tens of millions of dollars have been withheld by the employer.
Interestingly, this is not the first time that the handler has been sued over its payroll strategy: three separate incidents were recorded in Florida in 2012, for example.
A Servisair representative declared that the company had not been notified about the lawsuit and had that there was no official comment for the moment.
Gunning for you…
Despite media awareness campaigns, firearms and airports continue to mix and Sea-Tac holds the dubious record of being one of the main offending airports when it comes to passengers carrying guns. The latest data from the federal government reveals that almost 40 guns were confiscated by the Transportation Security Administration and Port of Seattle security personnel in 2012, putting Sea-Tac firmly in the number eight slot of the top ten guilty airports.
The TSA actually reported a 30% increase in the number of guns seized at US airports this year compared to the last. Passengers ought to be aware that attempted carriage of a firearm through an airport security checkpoint is both a state and a federal crime, even if the passenger has a concealed weapons permit.
What was perhaps more worrying was the evidence that purported to show that a large percentage of passengers who were caught were not charged with the crime. In fact, a review of four years’ worth of police and prosecutor office reports has shown that 113 passengers were caught at Sea-Tac checkpoints with guns. Of that total, 53 passengers were never charged.
TSA comes in for criticism
According to statistics, complaints leveled against US airport security workers have increased by 26% during the past three years. Worse still, the Transportation Security Agency lacks comprehensive systems to ensure that its employees follow its rules, says a government report.
The report says that complaints included use of drugs and alcohol by TSA agents whilst on duty, along with inconsistent use of security devices, which included X-ray machines.
The report also mentioned nearly 3,500 misconduct allegations, which were filed against TSA workers last year: this was up from 2,691 recorded statements in 2010. Most of these concerned violations of attendance and security policies, says the report published by the Government Accountability Office.
JBT picks up multiple bridge order
JBT Corporation announced recently that its JBT AeroTech business section has received a gate equipment order in excess of US$5m from San Francisco International airport.
The contract, placed by the Hensel Phelps Construction Company, is for the supply of ten new Jetway passenger boarding bridges. These passenger boarding bridges form a key part of the San Francisco Terminal 3 Boarding Area E Improvements Project, which was recently begun to create an environmentally-sustainable facility with world-class passenger amenities.