Monday, October 31, 2011
Strikes force Air France to cancel flights
Air France has seen approximately 15 per cent of its planned departures cancelled today as a strike by cabin crew continues to cause disruption.
Several unions walked out on Saturday as part of five days of action in protest against changes in working conditions.
The strike is expected to continue until Wednesday November 2nd.
Flight schedules have been reduced for the duration with Air France warning it could not rule out the possibility of “on the spot” cancellations.
Cabin crew, who called the strike during the middle of the half-term holidays in France, have been angered by a plan to reduce staffing on long-haul trips.
Government minister Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet has publicly criticised the unions, primarily over the timing.
“Air France is in a delicate position,” she told Europe 1 radio in an interview, with the carrier expected to release financial results on November 9th.
Passengers have also been angered by planes appearing to run with empty seats despite the strike.
Air France explained that to keep as many planes in the air as possible short-haul flights were being limited to 100 passengers so flight stewards numbers stayed within safety limits.