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As Mesaba struggles, other carriers wait in the wings

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Mesaba Saab turboprop aircraft
A Saab turboprop aircraft at MSP, part of the Mesaba fleet
MPR Photo/Jeff Horwich

Mesaba Airlines' identity may be closely linked with Northwest Airlines, but to the major carriers, the regional airlines are simply vendors. If one fails, others are ready for the job. 

MPR's Perry Finelli talked with airline industry analyst Doug Abbey about the relationship between regional carriers and the legacy airlines.