Mesaba Airlines and its pilots reached a tentative agreement Sunday, averting a strike, the threat of which forced the cancellation of dozens of weekend flights. Mesaba is the regional carrier for Northwest Airlines in six Iowa cities. The tentative contract ends more than two years of tough bargaining. The last few weeks were especially hard according to pilot Justin Palmer. He says every day he went to work he heard something new that would change his opinion on whether they would be striking or not. Union leaders will travel to Detroit, Cincinnati and Memphis to give details of the deal. The results of the electronic vote by union members are expected in about 10 days. Pilot Dave Eckstrom believes the rank-and-file will like the tentative agreement, as he says they’ve had a lot of input in the agreement.Mesaba flies into Cedar Rapids, Des Moines, Sioux City and Waterloo and is the only air carrier for Mason City and Fort Dodge.
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