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Some Flight Attendants Express Concern Flying Into Japan

Thursday, March 17, 2011

As the uncertainty about Japan's nuclear power plant continues, the largest flight attendants union says some of their members' families are pressuring them to avoid flying to Japan.

United Airlines has allowed flight attendants to opt out of flying into Japan, according to Christopher Clark, a spokesman for CWA, the largest flight attendants union. But, he said, Japan continues to be a popular route for flight attendants he said.

"We have not had any issues being able to staff our flights — we don’t have anything to say. No issues staffing flights," a spokesperson for United Airlines said.

"Yes, we have concerns about Japan. We are doing everything we can to help ensure safety and health of our flight attendants," said Corey Caldwell, a spokesperson for the Association of Flight Attendants, which represents flight attendants on 21 U.S. carries, three of which fly to Japan. “We’re concerned about radiation, and we’re working closely with government agencies, making sure we have most up to date info."

Caldwell said there are 500 flight attendants based out of Narita.

"We have been focused on their safety and helping them arrange alternative transportation and housing, as well as helping them care for their families," she said.

United Airlines has 183 flights a week to Japan that fly to nine airports, and the only airport currently closed is one in Sendai, according to a company spokesperson.

There are reports that flights on carriers Qantas, Lufthansa, KLM and EVA have been rerouted so flight attendants won't have to stay the night in Japan.

A Qantas spokesperson says crews are doing this "to avoid issues with transport and communication infrastructure in Tokyo which might prevent our crew getting to and from the airport or communicating with their managers. It is not related to radiation." He adds that the Australian government has advised Qantas there is currently no radiation risk in Tokyo.

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Comments [23]

shadeed ahmad from New York City

The flight attendants are routinely immersed in safety measures for others, now it is time for them to be the same way about their own safety.

It stands to reason that flight attendants are well versed in how air currents travel. The flight attendants are too savvy to put their lives in harm's way without first exercising their human right of protesting potential inhumane working conditions.

I wish all the best to the flight attendants, and may GOD have mercy on us all.

Mar. 21 2011 02:03 AM
NadePaulKuciGravMcKi from the states

Total information blackout of what is about to occur.
The nightmare in Japan will overtake everything.
Spy satellite IR studies tell no lies to the VIPs.

Quite soon, the media and governments
will be discredited in spectacular fashion

Mar. 19 2011 11:49 AM
Anjelixca from chicago

To all the ignorant, horrific and name calling people, your comments against flight attendants. I, am a very young flight attendant and work with the ladies, who think with their minds for your safety and nothing else. Why don't you take a train, take a cruise or if your remarks reflect your mouth get a job or join a healthlclub to get rid of all the gutter talk and so fixed on fat.....Sayonara!!!!!!

Mar. 19 2011 11:40 AM
Prunella Plushbottom from The World

Really... flight attendants are concerned about anythig except themselves? Amazing!! But... sit back and consider "the source".

LOL

Mar. 19 2011 05:21 AM
Joe from Joisey from holly afterlife

Id tell the stews that its time to Kamikaze this mother f____r out , issue out the saki, bandana's, and have them shout Banzai.....Banzai....Banzai.

Mar. 19 2011 12:11 AM
Joe from Joisey from holly afterlife

Id tell the stews that its time to Kamikaze this mother f____r out , issue out the saki, bandana's, and have them shout Banzai.....Banzai....Banzai.

Mar. 19 2011 12:11 AM
Dave from LA

I'd love to bang the flight attendants on American. I had a hard on the whole way to Narita. Too bad a Vietnamese couple was next to me with a crying baby the whole way... I would've rubbed one out.

Mar. 18 2011 11:43 PM
Dave from LA

I'd love to bang the flight attendants on American. I had a hard on the whole way to Narita. Too bad a Vietnamese couple was next to me with a crying baby the whole way... I would've rubbed one out.

Mar. 18 2011 11:43 PM
KLM from ORD

As a FA, I know all about the cosmic rays. It is true we are exposed to radiation more than the average workers. However, we don't need to add to it, if it can be helped.

Mar. 18 2011 09:04 PM
Mike from Philippines

I can remember sitting in Narita awaiting my connecting flight to the States. Dozens of pretty asian flight attendants passing us by.....then some very large, very old looking Northwestern stewardess's trudged by and someone made a "mooing" noise, joined by a few more until it sounded like a full-blown cattle stampede out of an old cowboy movie. Not very nice but the funniest thing I ever saw.

Mar. 18 2011 07:36 PM

A Qantas spokesperson says crews are doing this "to avoid issues with transport and communication infrastructure in Tokyo which might prevent our crew getting to and from the airport or communicating with their managers. It is not related to radiation." He adds that the Australian government has advised Qantas there is currently no radiation risk in Tokyo.

government told everyone not to worry, and now has declared a level 5 and rising nuclear disaster on par with three mile island and geting worse, the site will have to be entombed in concrete just as chernobyl was
not anyplace i would care to be right now

at the same time my heart goes out to the people of japan who cannot leave

Mar. 18 2011 07:03 PM
Fanny Forbes Franklen from Planet Janet

"The law does not pretend to punish everything that is dishonest. That would seriously interfere with business." ~ Clarence Darrow

--- http://911essentials.com

Mar. 18 2011 05:10 PM

nice, stay classy new york

Mar. 18 2011 04:43 PM
james from SFO

The F/A concerns are legit. Radiation particles are attracted to belly fat.

Mar. 18 2011 03:41 PM
Eric from Calif

Flight attendants should stick to worrying about STDs. Your airline scarf will protect you from the harmful effects of radiation...

Mar. 18 2011 03:20 PM
cm from Portland, Oregon

I'm a flight attendant.
I'd much rather fly to Narita with the well behaved, polite, and kind mannered passengers of Japan than with the likes of rude Americans. Radiation fears pale in comparison.....

Mar. 18 2011 02:56 PM
Pink Slip from Badlands

I can think of more than a few UA flight attendants in the Pacific Rim region who should be grounded and put on a treadmill.

Mar. 18 2011 02:25 PM
Scabbeus from New York

Radiation cures liberalism!

Mar. 18 2011 02:20 PM
GA

My wife was Purser on a flight descending into Narita, Tokyo’s International Airport, when the earthquake struck. Her flight eventually ended in Osaka. When the crews were returned to Narita they visited shelters and left what food they could find as well as their own jackets, scarves and gloves.

Upon returning home, two days later than scheduled, she put out a call for warm jackets and cold weather gear. She and other crew members also purchased, out of their own pockets, as much preserved milk and flashlights as they could carry.

Yesterday the crew returned to Narita with more than 20 large bags of jackets, blankets, gloves and the milk and flashlights. Our entry way is still stacked to the ceiling with more jackets and clothing that will be going in every day with the flight attendants.

Were they nervous about it? Of course. How could one not be worried with the legions of science illiterate reporters spreading hysteria? Still they went to work and are doing far more than their jobs require.

Mar. 18 2011 01:14 PM
Jay from Oklahoma

If you want a good dose of ignorant people with an opinion, read the comments section...

Mar. 18 2011 12:25 PM
j from California

If flight attendants were really concerned about radiation they wouldn't be flight attendants. They get regular doses of radiation from being higher in the sky and having less atmosphere filter out damaging rays. None of that radiation, however, is life threatening and neither is the amount coming out of Fukushima.

Mar. 18 2011 12:15 PM
Giovanni Abrate from Florida

Check the air intakes of the engines: they are the first to collect radioactive particles. I would guess that by now the outside of several airplanes flying to and from Japan is probably "hot" and should be decontaminated. This is what happened at the time of the Chernobyl disaster, in a very vast area of airspace throughout the globe.

Mar. 18 2011 12:08 PM
PacRim Jim from California

Hysterical wimps! People re-inhabited Hiroshima and Nagasaki shortly after the bombs were dropped, and their lifespans were unaffected.
Better not tell these attendants about cosmic rays, and especially neutrinos.

Mar. 18 2011 12:02 PM

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