Airline crews call LAX parking lot home
Motor home community is in Lot B
Here's the strangest proof we've seen to date that the airline industry ain't what it used to be. According to the Los Angeles Times, airline pilots and other employees are living in a collection of 100 campers and RVs in Parking Lot B of Los Angeles International Airport, less than 3,500 feet from the south runway.
It has the feel of a modern-day shantytown, replete with the sounds and smell of jets coming in for a landing at the nation's third busiest airport. Parking the motor home at a Wal-Mart sounds glamorous compared with this.
The LA Times reports:
It is a drab expanse of crumbling gray asphalt, approach lights, chain-link fencing and rows of beige and white RVs -- some battered, others grand. A splash of color comes from the red and white blooms of about a dozen rose bushes along the colony's northern edge.
But it's a steal. Rent for each space is only $60 a month.
Incidentally, it's not the only way LAX is setting a standard for weird. It gets a "Worst Airport Winner" award from The Guide to Sleeping in Airports Web site. (From what reviewers said, sleeping out in the parking lot would be preferable, even with the noise and fumes.) And, of the 12,000 laptops lost or stolen in U.S. airports each week, LAX ranks No. 1 with 1,200. LA Weekly reports that most are left behind at TSA checkpoints.
Why are pilots and other airline workers no longer sharing LA apartments with colleagues, which is what they used to do so they wouldn't have to commute long distances to their primary homes between flights? Pay cuts are part of the shrinkage that has plagued the troubled industry. The Times further explains:
Salaries for pilots, mechanics and other airline workers have plummeted. Captains like (Alaska Airlines pilot Jim) Lancaster have been demoted to first officer, losing hard-earned seniority and forcing them out of plum assignments at airports close to home. Lancaster, who came to LAX from Seattle about 18 months ago, estimates that his reduction in rank cost him about $30,000 a year, roughly 20% of his pay.
Published July 23, 2009
Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.
Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.
ABOUT SMART SPENDING
LATEST BLOG POSTS
A reader loves her job, but isn't making ends meet. Sound familiar? Read on.
VIDEO ON MSN MONEY
BLOGS WE LIKE
MUST-SEE ON MSN
- Video: Easy DIY smoked meats at home
A charcuterie master shares his process for cold-smoking meat at home.
- Jetpacks about to go mainstream
- Weird things covered by home insurance
- Bing: 70 percent of adults report 'digital eye strain'