400 US Airways flight attendants asked to take furloughs


US Airways Group Inc. is asking 400 flight attendants to take voluntary furloughs and leave as it faces overstaffing in the wake of flight reductions.

Three-hundred of the impacted flight attendant are in Phoenix and Las Vegas, said US Airways spokeswoman Valerie Wunder. The other 100 will come from the Tempe-based airline’s East Coast operations where it has flight attendants in markets such as Boston, New York and Charlotte, N.C. US Airways is the second largest carrier at Albany International Airport, behind Southwest.

US Airways has more than 6,600 flight attendants. Wunder said the Phoenix and Las Vegas furloughs and leave will be from four to 16 months while the East Coast terms will be three months.

US Airways cut 1,300 positions in 2008 as it and other airlines reduced flight schedules and costs in the wake of a pullback in consumer and business travel and record-high fuel prices. Fuel costs have dropped compared to last summer, but the U.S. recession continues to bite tourism and business travel.

Wunder said flight attendants were not part of the 1,300-worker reduction but current demand and flight capacity leaves that work group area overstaffed.

US Airways has more than 33,000 employees.