President of the Leeward Islands Airline Pilots’ Association (LIALPA) Carl Burke says that he is fearful that if LIAT’s management does not find a solution to the regional carrier’s problems, then the airline will lose more of its pilots.
Burke, who was speaking on ZDK’s Your Views on Thursday, said that the airline has been losing some of its newly trained pilots through early retirement or resignation which is large piece of investment lost.
” Over the last 3 years, 31 pilots who were actively for LIAT in 2014 have for whatever reason left the employer of LIAT…LIAT no longer has there service and out of all the ATR pilots who were trained, 19 have left and with an investment of roughly of EC$100,000 or the training in France for these pilots, that’s a lot of money,” he noted.
Burke said that he has received reports of more pilots leaving the airline this year and that if this happens, LIAT’s flight schedule will be impossible to follow.
He said someone needs to find a solution.
“We can talk about them not being patriotic but we have to ask ourselves why are these pilots leaving?,” he questioned.
“Somebody,” he continued, “high in the government need to look at the reason behind why we are losing our investments like this….and there are some indications that more pilots plan on leaving this year, how are we gonna fly the schedule?” he asked.
LIAT has been thrown under the bus in recent weeks because of a string of delayed and cancelled flights without notice, which according to officials, is due to limited financial resources and lack of financial support from many of the territories which it serves.