American Eagle Airlines: Wikis


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American Eagle
Founded 1984
Frequent flyer program AAdvantage (American Airlines)
Member lounge Admirals Club
Alliance Oneworld
Fleet size 267 (+22 orders)
Destinations 160
Parent company AMR Corporation
Headquarters Fort Worth, Texas
Key people
Website American Eagle

American Eagle Airlines is a brand name used by American Eagle Airlines, Inc. (formerly Simmons Airlines), based in Fort Worth, Texas,[1] and Executive Airlines based in San Juan, Puerto Rico, in the operation of passenger air service as regional affiliates of American Airlines.[2] All three airlines are wholly-owned subsidiaries of AMR Corp. American Airlines also has unrelated airlines under contract to provide regional service under the American Connection brand.

Operating over 1,800 flights a day, serving 159 cities across the USA, Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean[2], American Eagle is considered to be the world's largest regional airline system.[3]

The American Eagle brand is an affiliate member of the Oneworld alliance, and has code sharing agreements with Delta Air Lines and Continental Airlines on California routes.

The name was also used between April 1980 and April 1981 by an unrelated air charter service that suspended operations and filed bankruptcy before flying any scheduled operations.[4]



American Eagle began as a collection of unrelated regional carriers with contracts to carry the American Eagle brand name. The first American Eagle flight was operated by Metroflight Airlines on November 1, 1984 from Fayetteville, Arkansas to Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport. Other carriers that have flown in Eagle livery include Executive Airlines, Command Airways, Air Virginia, Simmons Airlines, Wings West Airlines, Metroflight Airlines and Chaparral Airlines.

Until 1987 these third-party carriers flew under contract with American Airlines to provide regional feed to its hubs. During 1987 and 1988 AMR Corp. acquired its regional carriers, starting with Simmons Airlines. By mid-1991 AMR had consolidated the number of carriers to four. The May 15, 1998 merger of Wings West and Flagship into Simmons (and the name change of Simmons to American Eagle) reduced the number of carriers flying as American Eagle under separate operating certificates to two: American Eagle Airlines, Inc. and Executive Airlines Inc.

The headquarters of AMR Corporation, which houses the American Eagle Airlines offices. (2009)
An American Eagle ERJ outbound from Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, Washington D.C.. (2006)
American Eagle Carriers
Carrier Eagle Service Began Acquired By AMR Eagle Service Ended Notes
Metroflight Airlines (formerly Metro Airlines) November 1, 1984 May 28, 1993 May 28, 1993 Bankrupt; assets acquired by Simmons Airlines[5]
AVAir (formerly Air Virginia) May 15, 1985 May 1988 May 1988 Bankrupt; assets acquired by Nashville Eagle[6]
Simmons Airlines October 1, 1985 August 1, 1987 May 15, 1998 Merged with Flagship and Wings West to form American Eagle Airlines[7]
Command Airways April 27, 1986 September 28, 1988 June 1, 1991 Merged into Nashville Eagle to form Flagship Airlines[8]
Wings West June 1986 August 9, 1987 May 15, 1998 Merged into Simmons to form American Eagle Airlines, Inc.[9]
Executive Airlines November 1, 1986 1990[10] Still operating
Nashville Eagle January 1988 January 1988 June 1, 1991 Merged with Command Airways to form Flagship Airlines[11]
Flagship Airlines June 1, 1991 June 1, 1991 May 15, 1998 Formed by the merger of Command Airways into Nashville Eagle; merged into Simmons to form American Eagle Airlines, Inc.[12]
American Eagle Airlines May 15, 1998 May 15, 1998 Still Operating Formed by the merger of Wings West and Flagship into Simmons[7]
  • In January 1988, Nashville Eagle became AMR Corp.’s first and only start-up airline, using equipment acquired from Air Midwest.[11]
  • American Eagle launched its regional jet service in May 1998 using Embraer ERJ 145 aircraft.
  • Business Express was acquired by AMR Eagle Holdings Corporation in March 1999,[13] although it never flew under the American Eagle brand before being fully integrated into American Eagle Airlines, Inc. in December 2000.


American Eagle operates from hubs in Chicago-O'Hare, Dallas-Fort Worth, Miami, San Juan, New York (Kennedy and LaGuardia), and Los Angeles.

American Eagle also operates maintenance stations in Abilene, Texas;[14] Highfill, Arkansas;[15][16] Columbus, Ohio; Springfield/Branson Regional Airport at Springfield, Mo. and Sawyer International Airport in Marquette, Michigan.



An American Eagle ERJ-140 taxiing at O'Hare International Airport, Chicago. (2008)
An American Eagle ERJ-145 docked at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport, Cleveland. (2009)

The American Eagle fleet consists of the following aircraft (at December 3, 2009):

American Eagle Fleet
Aircraft In Fleet Orders Passengers
Routes Notes
ATR 72-212 27 0 64 (0/64) Operates Florida and Caribbean routes from MIA and SJU. Operated by Executive Airlines
ATR 72-500 12 0 66 (0/66) Serves cities within 450 miles of DFW Operated by Executive Airlines
Bombardier CRJ700 25 22[17] 70 (0/70) High-density routes from ORD and DFW Deliveries: 2010
First Class to be installed. Original 25 CR7 reconfigured to (9/54); new CR7s are (9/56) [18]
Embraer ERJ-135 32 0 37 (0/37) Continental U.S. other than west coast (primarily northeast region), Canada American Eagle Airlines, Inc.
Embraer ERJ-140 59 0 44 (0/44) Continental U.S., Mexico and Canada. American Eagle Airlines, Inc.
Embraer ERJ-145 112 0 50 (0/50) Continental U.S. other than west coast, Canada, Mexico American Eagle Airlines, Inc.
Total 267 22

At September 2009, the average age of American Eagle fleet is 8.8 years.[19]

On-board service

On domestic flights in North America and areas in the Caribbean, American Eagle Airlines offers a buy on board program offering snacks for purchase. Flights two hours or longer have snacks.[20]

Incidents and accidents

Executive Airlines

  • On May 8, 1987, American Eagle Flight 5452 operated by regional airline Executive Airlines, a CASA 212-200, was on a domestically scheduled passenger flight between San Juan, Puerto Rico-Mayaguez, Puerto Rico crashed short of Runway 09 while landing at Mayaguez. After impacting, the plane continued through a chain link fence and a ditch. Of the 6 occupants onboard (4 passengers and 2 crew on board) 2 were killed. The cause of the crash was determined to be the improper maintenance in setting the flight idle propeller and engine fuel flow.
  • On June 7, 1992, an American Eagle flight operated by regional airline Executive Airlines, was on a regular flight between San Juan, Puerto Rico and Mayaguez, Puerto Rico when it lost control and crashed nose-down about 3/4 mile from the Mayaguez, Puerto Rico airport. Both crew and all three passengers were killed. The cause of the crash was the copilot's inadvertent activation of the levers, causing the plane to lose control. The aircraft involved was a CASA 212-200.[21]
  • On May 9, 2004, American Eagle Flight 5401, an ATR-72, crashed on landing in San Juan, Puerto Rico after the captain lost control of the aircraft while landing. Seventeen people were injured, but there were no fatalities.[22]
  • On February 7, 2008, American Eagle Flight 5111, a ATR-72-500 had to make an emergency landing in La Romana International Airport after departing from Las Américas International Airport to Luis Muñoz Marin International Airport at 11:30 am. The captain said that he had some problems with the right engine, and as they were approaching the La Romana zone smoke began to spray into the cabin. The captain spoke to La Romana's control tower and obtained permission to make an emergency landing there.

American Eagle Airlines, Inc.

  • October 31, 1994, American Eagle Flight 4184 operated by AMR's regional airline Simmons Airlines (now American Eagle Airlines), an ATR 72; Near Roselawn, Indiana: The aircraft inverted, dived, and crashed from holding pattern at 10,000 feet (3050 m) "after a ridge of ice accreted beyond the deice boots." The four crew and 64 passengers were all killed. [5]. In the months following the accident, American Eagle redeployed its ATR fleet to Miami and the Caribbean where icing is not an issue.
  • July 9, 1995, American Eagle Flight 4127, an ATR 72 operated by Simmons Airlines, experienced a loss of the rear cabin entry door during climb after taking off from O'Hare International Airport in Chicago. The cabin door opened shortly after the first officer began to pressurize the cabin; therefore, only a slight pressure differential existed between the cabin pressure and the atmospheric pressure. Lack of damage indicates the door was unlocked/unlatched when it opened. The airplane was one of fifteen aircraft equipped with a new handrail and door handle design which was different than the majority of the ATR 72 fleet. The old handle was pulled down to latch/lock the door and pushed up to unlatch/unlock the door. The direction of motion was reversed so that the handle was pushed up to latch/lock the door and pulled down to unlatch/unlock the door.
    • A private citizen located the separated door in approximately 2 feet of water in the Des Plaines River on July 10, 1995.
    • Following this incident, ATR designed another new door handle design which returns the handle motion to push up to unlatch/unlock, and pull down to latch/lock.[23]

American Eagle Airlines, Inc. Predecessors

  • August 24, 1984, Wings West Airlines / Flight 628 Midair collision. Shortly after departing the San Luis Obispo County Regional Airport on a commuter flight to San Francisco International Airport, a Wings West Airlines twin-engine Beechcraft C99 (N6399U) collided head-on with a private Rockwell Commander 112TC aircraft (N112SM) that was descending for a landing at the same airport.[24]
  • February 19, 1988, American Eagle Flight 3378 operated by the Avair, a Fairchild Swearingen Metroliner was on a regularly scheduled flight between Raleigh-Richmond when it crashed into a reservoir about a mile from Raleigh-Durham International Airport from where it had departed in the vicinity of Cary, North Carolina: The aircraft departed during low ceiling, low visibility, and night conditions. Analysis of radar data indicated the aircraft was in a 45 degree descending turn. Both crew members and all 10 passengers were killed. It was revealed during the investigation that the pilot had complained of illness but decided to continue the flight.[25]
  • December 13, 1994, American Eagle Flight 3379 operated by AMR's regional airline Flagship Airlines,[26] a Jetstream 31 was on a regularly scheduled service of Raleigh-Greensboro-Raleigh when it crashed into a wooded area about 4 miles SW of the Raleigh-Durham International Airport in the vicinity of Morrisville, NC. Of the 20 onboard (18 passengers and 2 crewmembers) 15 were killed while the 5 survivors received serious injuries. The probable cause of the crash was the pilot not following proper procedure when it came to an engine failure situation.[27]
  • January 2006, American Eagle Flight 3008 from San Luis Obispo to Los Angeles, California, a Saab SF340B+ encountered icing at 11,000 feet and regained control only at 6,500 feet, after some 50 seconds' descent. During the incident, in which no one was injured, the autopilot disconnected, the stall alarm/clacker sounded, the plane rolled sharply left and right, experienced vibration, pitched down, partly under manual control, manual deice boots were activated and ice could be heard shedding off and striking the fuselage. Nose-down descent was maintained, and velocity of 500 ft. per second was reached before full control was reestablished.[28]

See also


  1. ^ "American Eagle Airlines." Manta. Retrieved on July 28, 2009.
  2. ^ a b American Eagle Airlines
  3. ^ "Directory: World Airlines". Flight International: p. 75. 2007-03-27.  
  4. ^ Tom W Norwood (1996). "1980". Deregulation Knockouts, Round One. Airways. p. 33. ISBN 0-9653993-0-3.  
  5. ^ Metroflight
  6. ^ Air Virginia
  7. ^ a b Simmons Airlines
  8. ^ Command Airways
  9. ^ Wings West
  10. ^ Executive Airlines
  11. ^ a b Nashville Eagle
  12. ^ Flagship Airlines
  13. ^ "COMPANY NEWS; AMERICAN EAGLE AIR BUYING BUSINESS EXPRESS." The New York Times. December 5, 1998 [1]
  14. ^ Kliener, Sarah. "DCOA slims funding for Eagle Aviation." Abilene ReporterNews Online. Wednesday, May 23, 2007. [2]
  15. ^ Turner, Jennifer."Growth of regional airport, economy go hand in hand." Arkansas Democrat Gazette. February 13, 2005[3]
  16. ^ "American Eagle Airlines Announces Expansion in Northwest Arkansas." PRNewswire. October 1, 2007[4]
  17. ^ American Eagle decides to order 22 extra CRJ-700 aircraft
  18. ^ American Eagle to receive 22 more CRJ-700's and First Class for all CRJ-700's
  19. ^ American Eagle Airlines Fleet Age
  20. ^ "North America And Caribbean Meal Service." American Airlines. Accessed October 11, 2008.
  21. ^ Executive Airlines NTSB Brief July 7, 1992 Accident Report
  22. ^ American Eagle Flight 5401 NTSB Brief Report
  23. ^ NTSB brief, flight 4127
  24. ^
  25. ^ American Eagle Flight 3378 NTSB Brief Report
  26. ^ American Eagle Flight 3379 Information
  27. ^ American Eagle Flight 3379 NTSB Brief Report
  28. ^ a b NTSB Safety Recommendation July 10, 2006. Addressed to Honorable Marion Blakey, Commissioner, Federal Aviation Authority, pp. 1-4. Retrieved 2-15-09.
  29. ^ " Aviation Safety Investigation Report - Final/Saab Aircraft Co SF-340A, VH-KEQ/Occurrence Number: 200402415" Australian Transport Safety Bureau, Occurrence Number: 200402415 Occurrence Date: 18 June 2004. Report Last Updated: 1 November, 2006. Retrieved 2-15-09.

External links

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