Heathrow airport strikes could disrupt 5000 flights: Here’s what to avoid

LONDON(a1tv news) The planned series of strikes at the London Heathrow Airport could disrupt thousands of flights as workers have revealed the plan in this regard.

The strikes would take place in May but come at a time when King’s Coronation would take place and travelers from other countries would land in the United Kingdom. 

The last strike was scheduled from March 31st but the May strikes have been planned on different dates i.e walkout from May 4th to 6th, 9th to 10th, and 25th to 27th and around 1,400 Heathrow staff are expected to participate in the strike.

Interestingly, the King’s Coronation coincides with the protest schedule as the former is planned for May 6th.

The primary reason for the strike is failed negotiation regarding staff pay. The Unite association pushing for strike stresses that airport workers are not happy with their salary structure. 

“Yet again, we have a chief executive who thinks it is acceptable to boost his earnings while he denies his own workers a decent pay rise. This dispute is bound to escalate with more workers being balloted and disruption set to continue throughout the summer,” union’s general secretary, Sharon Graham said.

On the other hand, Heathrow airport’s management takes the plea that it had offered security officers a 10% pay rise effective January 1st, plus a one-off payment of over £1,150; the union has turned down the offer and advocates that a “small one-off lump sum” will not be enough to lessen the financial burden of the workers. 

Meanwhile, a Heathrow spokesperson vowed to keep the operations uninterrupted. 

 “We kept Heathrow running smoothly during the first 10 days of Unite’s failed industrial action, and passengers can have confidence that we will do so again this time. We will not let Unite disrupt the flow of visitors to the UK during such an important period for the country,” the spokesperson said.

It must be kept in mind that although flight operations would be affected largely, the carrier likely to face the maximum brunt would be British Airways as the protesting staff is deputed at Heathrow Terminal 5, which handles most British Airways flights; other terminals will not be affected by the walkout.

The severity of the protest could be gauged from the fact that Cirium data (Analytics for aviation) reveals that a total of 5,148 flights are scheduled to depart on the days of the strike. Out of these, 2,621 are scheduled to be operated by British Airways.

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