PSA Airlines, Images by Wernher Krutein and PHOTOVAULT®

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See Also: Commercial Aviation, AEROSPACE, TRANSPORTATION, Airlines, Airport Codes, San Diego, PSA L-1011, PSA 727, PSA DC-9, PSA Lockheed Electra, PSA Bae 146, PSA DC-4, PSA Tower
This was one of the greatest airlines I have ever flown. I was 9 years old when I started flying on this airline and somehow I gained an immediate loyalty to it. In the subsequent years I would sometimes fly on PSA two or three times a week going back and forth between LA, SD and SF.

I hope you enjoy this gallery of images as it keeps alive the remarkable airline PSA was.

The following is a chat I had with a fellow enthusiast:

Hey... LOVE your shots of PSA, an airline that unfortunately I was too young to have ever seen in person. With that being said, their planes looked gorgeous and they basically set the business model that has changed post-deregulation US aviation forever.

It is always great to meet someone that loves that airline. That was my absolute number one airline of all time. I have many images of PSA that I have done throughout the years. I have images from San Diego, Las Vegas, Burbank, SFO, Portland, SeaTac, and many other airports to numerous to mention. I have two links you can take a look at regarding all this. This is from my new site and contains more images as I am now continually adding new work as the come into my archives:

Hope you enjoy this.

Vegas! That's one I have not seen much of, PSA at McCarran. PSA's lasting legacy to me is the extreme competition of the SFO-LAX route that they basically pioneered, the PSA Expressway.

I have flown that corridor many times from the 1960's right to the assimilation of PSA into US Air. I remember one time making sure I arrived 45 mins before my PSA flight, and standing there, right next to my gate, i saw that a flight to LAX was leaving in 5 mins. I went ahead and asked the employee if I could just go ahead and take that flight instead, he looked at me, then my ticket, and said go ahead get in, were leaving in 5 mins. It was so amazing. What a brilliantly run airline. You can even see a sequence of a DC-9 in flight coming in for a landing at SFO. I captured that from my window seat from another PSA flight. I was blown away having that view and capturing it on film. I also loved Western Airlines so I have some very interesting images of that airline including their 720's. Also got some good stuff of Air Cal. Hope you enjoy.

Thanks for the all the shots! It's nice to see some of those old AirCal birds still serving for Southwest on much of the routes they would have flown in the heady days immediately before and after deregulation.

Forgot where I saw it - I think on the PSA tribute site - but they had that automated ticketing machine where one could buy it right at the airport. Makes me think of the insane lines one experiences now if they don't print their boarding pass in advance...not sure if a ticket-purchase machine could ever fly in today's high-security age, but it sure would be great for the one-hour commuter flights!

A little minor detail, but I DO love that PSA always called their stretched DC-9s the "DC-9 Super 80" and never McDonnell Douglas's marketing-specific "MD-80" name (of which only the MD-88 was not given a DC-9 name at any point). American still calls theirs Super 80s as well.

Another airline that I have recently become intrigued with is Sierra Pacific. I only have started my collection in the past few years of that airline as I never got to fly on it.

Wow, never heard of them until now. Thanks for the link.

Also forget not that there was another short lived airline called Pacific Express, and that one I did fly on also. And yes I have images that i made of that airline. United also held its own in those days, though they were so big it was more difficult for them to react quickly to the PSA moves as was the same for American Airlines.

And some random tidbit I read on the Southwest blog earlier (as they do historic aviation posts on Fridays) - In addition to the fact that PSA showed much generosity in giving Southwest their business plans and employee manuals to help Southwest get started, the first two Southwest airframes if I'm not mistaken (N20SW and N21SW) were not 737-2H4 desginated, but 737-214 each - reflecting their original derignation of PSA!

So, since so much was covered above on this topic, a little interesting fact is that Captain Sully started out as a first officer on the MD-80 for PSA. He was based at SFO. After USAIr took over PSA, his flying duties shifted to the east coast even though he remained at SFO. Obviously the rest is history as he went on to be captain and fly the A320. So even the "Miracle on the Hudson" can be traced back to PSA.

I sure miss this airline.
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