Southwest Airlines pilots approve 4-year deal, higher pay

Markets Associated Press

Southwest Airlines Co. pilots have ratified a new four-year contract that includes higher pay and bonuses.

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The Dallas-based carrier on Monday announced approval of the deal. About 84 percent of Southwest Airlines Pilots' Association members who cast ballots voted in favor of the agreement.

The contract includes an immediate 15 percent pay raise.

Contract negotiations began in 2012. Mediated talks started in 2014. Pilots last November rejected another proposed contract.

Union president Capt. John Weaks says members thought the latest agreement was the right thing for them and their families. The association represents about 8,400 pilots.

Flight attendants at Southwest last month narrowly ratified a new contract.