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Eastwind Airlines was a start-up airline formed in mid-1995 and headquartered in Trenton, New Jersey, United States[1], and later in Greensboro, North Carolina.[2][3] Jim McNally, a former Price Waterhouse analyst who had headed that firm's recovery teams when several other airlines sought management and investment help, founded the airline. McNally's paper airline found a benefactor in UM Holdings, a Haddonfield, New Jersey-based investment company, which provided investment capital.[4]

The airline began in August 1995.[3] Eastwind chose Trenton as no major airlines served Trenton and the airline believed that it could attract passengers from Philadelphia and New York City.[5] The headquarters moved to Greensboro in 1996 after Continental Airlines ended the Continental Lite operations in Greensboro.[4]

DestinationsEdit

File:Greater Rochester International Airport Eastwind 737 1998.jpg

The airline had destinations across the East Coast of the United States including:

FloridaEdit

  • Fort Lauderdale (Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport)[3]
  • Jacksonville, Florida (Jacksonville International Airport)[1][6]
  • Orlando (Orlando International Airport)[3][7]
  • Saint Petersburg (Saint Petersburg Clearwater International Airport)[7]
  • Tampa (Tampa International Airport)[3]
  • West Palm Beach (Palm Beach International Airport)[1][6]

GeorgiaEdit

  • Atlanta (Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport)[6]

MassachusettsEdit

New JerseyEdit

  • Trenton (Trenton-Mercer Airport)[3][6]

New YorkEdit

  • Rochester (Greater Rochester International Airport)
  • New York (LaGuardia Airport)

North CarolinaEdit

  • Greensboro/High Point/Winston-Salem (Piedmont Triad International Airport)[1][3][6]

PennsylvaniaEdit

  • Philadelphia (Philadelphia International Airport)
  • Pittsburgh (Pittsburgh International Airport)[7]

Rhode IslandEdit

  • Providence (T.F. Green Airport)[6]

VirginiaEdit

  • Richmond (Richmond International Airport)[6]
  • Washington, DC area (Washington Dulles International Airport)[3][4]

FleetEdit

At the height of the airline's operation in 1998, it operated a fleet of three Boeing 737-200 and two Boeing 737-700 aircraft.

IncidentEdit

On June 9, 1996 Eastwind Airlines Flight 517, a Boeing 737-200 experienced a reported loss of rudder control while on approach to Richmond from Trenton. There was one minor injury to a flight attendant and no damage to the airplane as a result of the incident. At the time of the event the airplane's airspeed was about 250 knots and at 4,000 feet MSL. On approach the crew experienced unexpected movement of the rudder causing the airplane rolling to the right. The crew applied opposite rudder to keep the plane from rolling over. Thirty-seconds later the plane righted itself back to normal flight. As the crew performed the emergency checklist the plane again rolled over to the right. Another thirty-seconds went by before the plane snapped back to level. The crew declared an emergency and landed safety in Richmond. Investigation of this incident would later help solve two other mysterious accidents: United Airlines Flight 585 and USAir Flight 427.

An Eastwind Airlines flight (Eastwind Airlines flight 507) described the first reports of TWA Flight 800 exploding.[8]

Financial problemsEdit

Due to the short runway at Trenton-Mercer Airport, the airline served Philadelphia for a short time, but consolidated its flights back to Trenton, New Jersey in early 1999 when Delta Air Lines terminated their contract to handle ground services.

By 1999, the airline faced some performance concerns as well as financial trouble. In July 1999, the airline terminated several senior managers including its CEO. [9]

The financial problems were exacerbated by the purchase of two new Boeing 737-700 aircraft in 1997. Service issues created tension with its customers, resulting in large numbers of complaints filed with the FAA. [2] In 1999, two passengers in Greensboro who feared being stranded in Greensboro refused to get off an airplane forcing the captain to call authorities. [7]

While the airline's management refused to file for bankruptcy, in October 1999, three creditors filed a petition for involuntary bankruptcy in an effort to force the airline to liquidate. The airline ceased operations not long afterwards. One of the 737-700 aircraft was acquired by Southwest Airlines.

ReferencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 "IN BRIEF; Trenton-Based Airline To Add Florida Flights," The New York Times
  2. 2.0 2.1 "Eastwind struggles in turbulent times," The Business Journal
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 3.8 "The fledgling: tiny Eastwind Airlines fights for flights, spreading its wings at Piedmont Triad International Airport." Business North Carolina. 2.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 "The fledgling: tiny Eastwind Airlines fights for flights, spreading its wings at Piedmont Triad International Airport." Business North Carolina. 3.
  5. The fledgling: tiny Eastwind Airlines fights for flights, spreading its wings at Piedmont Triad International Airport." Business North Carolina. 4.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 6.6 6.7 "NEW JERSEY DAILY BRIEFING;New Flights to Atlanta," The New York Times
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 "Eastwind ousts execs," Orlando Business Journal
  8. "The fledgling: tiny Eastwind Airlines fights for flights, spreading its wings at Piedmont Triad International Airport." Business North Carolina. 6.
  9. Eastwind ousts execs - Orlando Business Journal:

External linksEdit

Template:Aviation lists

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