TWA cuts service, retires planes to reduce costs

September 09, 1992|By New York Times News Service

Trans World Airlines announced cutbacks in service yesterday as part of an effort to return to profitability by shrinking and reducing costs.

The reductions in flights are part of TWA's plan, to be presented to a federal bankruptcy court this month, for emergence from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, which it entered in January.

The plan calls for the retirement of about 20 wide-body Boeing 747s and Lockheed L-1011s, shrinking the airline's fleet from 187 airplanes to 167.

The plan includes a 15 percent cut in labor costs through wage, benefit and work-rule concessions from all of TWA's unions, whose leaders agreed to the terms last month.

The last major piece of the reorganization plan to be negotiated is a settlement of the underfunding of TWA's pension plans. Talks between between TWA's chairman, Carl C. Icahn, and Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. have narrowed differences in the past month.

Under the reorganization plan, the carrier will suspend service to Istanbul, Moscow, Copenhagen and Stockholm.

It will no longer serve eight domestic cities: Austin, Texas; Ontario, Calif.; Palm Springs, Calif.; Salt Lake City; Sioux City, Iowa; Sioux Falls, S.D.; Syracuse; and Tucson, Ariz.

The winter schedule will provide 700 daily flights to and from 62 domestic and 18 foreign cities. Now, the airline has 778 flights daily.

The carrier said it planned to serve many of its domestic cities with narrow-body planes, with flights concentrated at its hubs at Kennedy International Airport, St. Louis and Atlanta.

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