Air control strike will hit flights

One in two flights cancelled at major airports during three days of delays and disruption across Europe

9 June 2013

AIRLINES using France’s eight largest airports have been told to cut 50% of their flights tomorrow, Wednesday and Thursday as a result of strike action called by air control staff.

Passengers flying on these days should check with their airline for more information – and should not set off for the airport without confirming their flight.

The Paris airports Charles-de-Gaulle, Orly and Beauvais, plus Lyon, Nice, Marseille, Toulouse and Bordeaux are directly affected by the cancellations but the controllers’ three-day strike will mean delays on remaining flights all across the country.

Controllers are protesting against the European Union’s Single European Sky plans to open up the air control system to increase capacity and cut delays while reducing fuel costs and cutting emissions.

The EU says the plans could save €5billion a year but the European Transport Workers’ Federation (ETF) says it will lead to cuts in jobs and safety. The ETF called a strike for Wednesday – and France’s main union, SNCTA, included further strikes on Tuesday and Thursday to intensify the action.

In the UK, a spokesman for NATS, the air traffic control service, said they “were not expecting any industrial action, but there will be an obvious knock-on effect from the European delays and cancellations”.
Photo: fred goldstein -

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