US Airways - December 2013 - (Page 12)

embark Making It Happen behind the Scenes of Your Flight Ramping Up Baggage handlers, also known as rampers, get one heck of a workout. ★ 12 december 2013 scans the baggage tags and puts the bags on the tractor's conveyor belt. Joe then loads the bags onto a cart to be driven to baggage claim or to other gates for passengers connecting to other flights. 10:20 - Tim compares the scanner's numbers with the paperwork to ensure that all bags are accounted for. 10:25-11 - After lunch, Tim heads back to the ramp to load bags for his next scheduled flight. "We usually start loading a plane 40 minutes before departure," he says. 11-11:30 - Tim, Joe, and Kenny load 100 bags weighing about 3,000 pounds. 11:30 - Tim walks to the jet bridge to make sure there are no gate-check bags left in the area. 11:40 - Tim directs the plane as it pushes back from the gate, and he salutes the captain. He'll do this all over again for one more flight arriving from Dublin and then call it a day. "I estimate that I load and unload about thirty thousand pounds each day. It keeps me physically and mentally in shape," he says. That's not the only thing he enjoys about his job. "There's a real family atmosphere here, and I like that." photo by brian gomsak It's 9 a.m. and Tim Brown, a ramper in Charlotte, has already been at work for nearly four hours, loading and unloading baggage. He started on the ramp (airline lingo for the tarmac area outside the gates) in 1982. After several years in other positions with the airline, he came back to the ramp because he wanted to see "if I could still physically do it," he says. We caught up with Tim to follow him through a typical shift - but let him do the heavy lifting. 9:45 a.m. - Tim checks a computer and sees that the next flight he's unloading is within range. He prints the paperwork, which lists the number of bags on the plane and their total weight (9,700 pounds). He grabs his earplugs and kneepads and heads outside. 9:59 - Tim helps direct the plane to the gate. When it stops, he places chocks around the front tire, hooks up the push-back tractor, and opens the rear cargo door. 10-10:18 - Tim and two other members of his group, Joe and Kenny, help unload the rear cargo compartment (a "bin" in airline speak). Tim is inside the bin handing bags to Kenny, who then by Tara Titcombe

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of US Airways - December 2013

Table of Contents
CEO Letter
From the Editor
Did You Know?
Making It Happen
Hot Spots: Vacation Memories
Hub Crawl: Miami International Airport
Wine & Dine: Holiday Fizz
Diversions: Going Whole Hog
Diversions: Time Travel
Style Spotlight: Holiday Bling
Adventure: North Carolina's High Country
Adventure: Arizona Story
Adventure: Sled Dog Racing
Gear Up: Stocking Stuffers
Great Escapes: Charleston Place Hotel
Great Escapes: Hotel Palomar in Washington, DC
Travel Feature: Costa Rica
US Airways: Tower Talk
Celebrate Tucson, AZ
Health Matters: Miami Foot and Ankle Surgery
Charlotte, USA
Must Read: I Got Schooled
Readers Resource Index
Your US Airways Guide
Video Entertainment
Audio Entertainment
U.S. and Caribbean Service Map
International Service Map
Airport Terminal Maps
US Airways Fleet/Customs & Immigration
Passenger Info/Contact US Airways
US Airways MarketPlace®
Window or Aisle?

US Airways - December 2013