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News

Ryanair calls for EU Action as Belgian ATC strikes

Wednesday 29, September 2010

 

Ryanair calls for EU Action as Belgian ATC strikes

 

Ryanair has called on the EU Commission to take urgent action to end the ongoing chaos over European skies as Belgian Air Traffic Controllers announce a 24 hour wildcat strike (from 1400hrs today 28th Sept) which will close Belgian airspace. This strike is in addition to a Spanish ATC strike tomorrow (29th Sept) and a French ATC strike last Thursday.

 

After a summer of repeated European ATC strikes, work to rules and staff no shows, yet again Europe’s passengers and airlines have their travel plans cancelled or disrupted while the EU Commission stands by doing nothing. Ryanair questioned why Europe’s consumers are being repeatedly hijacked by protected, cosseted, overpaid ATC workers while the European Union sits on its hands doing nothing.

 

Ryanair again called on the EU Commission to take the following action.

 

  1. Remove the “right to strike” for essential transport services such as Europe’s ATC.
  2. Sack any ATC workers who participate in these illegal strikes (in the same way Ronald Reagan sacked and replaced striking ATC staff in the US in the 1980’s).
  3. Deregulate Europe’s national ATC services in order to allow non striking ATC’s (such as the UK and Ireland) to keep the skies over Belgium, France and Spain open, while overpaid, underworked ATC’s in these countries go on strike again and again and again.

 

Ryanair’s Head of Communications, Stephen McNamara said:

“How many more of these disruptions, delays and strikes must Europe’s consumers suffer before the EU Commission finally takes some action? These ATC strikers are the modern day equivalent of highwaymen. They don’t care about consumers, they don’t care about passengers and they repeatedly strike because they know they can shut down Europe’s skies and hold EU Governments and passengers to ransom. It is ridiculous that Belgian ATC controllers can strike for 24 hours with no notice whatsoever, thereby causing maximum disruption and suffering to air passengers. It is also appalling that Spanish Air Traffic Controllers, some of whom earn almost €1 million per year, continue to engage in strikes, go slows and work to rules, which have caused delays and misery for millions of European passengers all summer long."

 

“The European Commission should stop “talking” about ending delays and do something. The single greatest cause of air traffic delays in Europe are Govt owned and mismanaged ATC services. It’s time the ‘right to strike’ of this essential service was removed, or failing that, if these people don’t want to go to work, then sack them and replace them with military and other Air Traffic Controllers who do want to work."

 

“How many more times will Europe’s skies be closed before the European Commission finally takes some action to end this recurring ATC chaos."

 

 

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