Data in Action: The Year in DART

By Kevin Cuddihy, Contributing Writer

Ten ALPA pilot groups joined the Data Action Report (DART) system in 2023, bringing the total number of pilot groups using DART to 29.

DART provides one location for pilots to get quick answers from trusted master executive council (MEC) leaders and subject-matter experts to questions on any topic. The DART system automatically routes questions to the right persons to answer, and, in most cases, pilots receive a response within 48 hours.

Let’s look at how pilots from these groups used DART, what topics pilots are asking about most, and which pilot groups are using the system to its fullest.

By the Numbers

114,645 DARTs were sent from program start in October 2019 through Dec. 31, 2023.

55,366 DARTs were sent in 2023—48 percent of the total number of DARTs since the program’s inception in 2019.

151.7 DARTs were sent per day on average in 2023.

September was the top month with 5,904 DARTs sent (197 per day).

Nine out of 10 DARTs were replied to on time, with the Endeavor Air MEC leading the way with a 99 percent on-time response rate to pilot questions.

DART’s Top 10 Pilot Groups

These pilot groups threw the most DARTs in 2023.

Spirit — 11,491
Air Canada — 8,122
FedEx Express — 7,123
Frontier — 5,884
Delta — 4,583
WestJet — 4,062
Endeavor Air — 3,421
Hawaiian — 2,469
Sun Country — 2,191
PSA — 1,133

It’s All About the Schedule

Scheduling is far and away the top area of concern with DART users. Two of the top three categories overall involved scheduling, and those two categories saw 31 percent of all DARTs sent last year. The following are other top subject areas for which ALPA pilots submitted DARTs last year.

Scheduling–General — 11,732
Contract Administration — 6,007
Scheduling–Bidding — 5,399
Hotel — 4,175
Compensation–Pay Issues — 3,198
Grievance — 2,903
Retirement/Insurance/Benefits — 2,060
Local Executive Council Communications — 2,022
General — 2,006
Training–General — 1,828
Master Executive Council Communications — 1,768

Hitting the Ground Running

Air Canada, ALPA’s newest Group A pilot group, joined the Association on May 17, 2023, following the approval by ALPA’s Executive Board of the ALPA-Air Canada Pilots Association merger. The Air Canada Master Executive Council introduced the DART system to the pilot group shortly thereafter, starting with the upgrade to DART 2.0 on June 5.

The pilots’ DART usage quickly ramped up. Air Canada pilots threw 134 DARTs in just the first week and 690 by the end of June. They haven’t fallen below 1,000 DARTs in a month since and ended the year with 8,122. The pilot group was the second-highest DART user in 2023 while only being active for just more than half a year. And those DARTs came from 2,624 individual pilots. More than half of their pilot group threw at least one DART.

Read the latest Air Line Pilot (PDF)