Delta continues CRJ900 shuffle

By Lori Ranson

Delta Air Lines has reversed a decision to allocate 15 Bombardier CRJ900s to Northwest Airlines wholly-owned subsidiary Mesaba Airlines and instead will only award five of the aircraft to the carrier.

On 10 November Delta confirmed the CRJ900s previously scheduled for operation by Mesa Airlines would be flown by Mesaba starting this month. Delta and Northwest finalized their merger in October after winning US Justice Department approval for the agreement.

Originally seven of the CRJ900s that were to be flown by Mesaba were going to be based in Atlanta.

Now Delta Connection partner and SkyWest Inc. subsidiary Atlantic Southeast Airlines will operate 10 of the aircraft.

Delta's reasoning for the switch is it "allows us a better opportunity to balance our Delta Connection portfolio to market demands", says a carrier spokesman.

After Delta terminated the deal with Mesa for operation of the CRJ900s, the Atlanta-hubbed carrier placed seven of the aircraft temporarily with Pinnacle Airlines, with one aircraft serving as a spare.

Air Transport Intelligence

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