The Eagle Has Fallen: American Eagle Ranks Low

A new report is out showing the best and worst of low cost air carriers in the nation and private researchers ranked American Eagle last among regional carriers.

That's big news for Wichita Falls Municipal Airport.  American Eagle is the only carrier at the airport.

An airport official says the airline has been providing more reliable transportation since the beginning of the year.  New jets are just one of the improvements the airport administrator says travelers can look forward to.

LeeAnn Moran said, "The report was actually a little bit disturbing, but I will say that here locally they are making all kinds of efforts to improve the costumer service they are giving."

A study from Wichita State and Purdue Universities show that out of all the regional carriers in the nation, American Eagle is the worst.

Moran says she was surprised to hear the report.  She says things have actually been looking up.  "Here locally they have implemented all jet service. They have gone to the regional jets for all flights."

The carrier used to just offer ATR turbo prop planes at the airport.  Moran says the new jets have been more reliable.  It is helping with delayed flights and cancellations, two categories the air liner scored low on.

Moran said,"We know the importance of having a very functional airport and providing a good service to the citizens of Wichita Falls."

That's why, even with the low ranking of the airport's only carrier, Wichita Falls Municipal is working to make improvements.

"We are ramping up doing everything that we can," said Moran.  "We're hoping for this new terminal which is a really exciting thing."

She says they are in the final stages of getting finances in order for the first phase of the long awaited building plan.  It includes a new terminal, parking lot and apron, all to allow the airport to bring in a new carrier.  A new web site and ads are also ways the airports is showing Texoma they are trying to improve.

"We want people to know that we are trying to grow the airport, that we are trying to grow our services,"Moran said.  "We want people to start trusting us again. The reliability has gone up. We are a fast efficient, easy way to get to Dallas."

Construction on phase one of the airport building project could begin as soon as next month.

The Wichita Falls Municipal Airport says American Eagle will add another daily flight to Dallas beginning tomorrow.  That brings their total up to four.

Taelor Rian, Newschannel 6.