The first departures of the European summer were disrupted this Saturday by a strike by cabin crew of the airline Ryanair, forced to cancel dozens of flights, especially in Belgium and France, said union and airport sources. At Ryanair, several unions of air hostesses and stewards called to stop work from Friday and for several days, in Spain, Portugal and Belgium. In Italy and France, the strike started on Saturday.
In France, 36 flights were canceled on Saturday, out of the 80 normally operated by Ryanair with French staff, Damien Mourgues, union representative of the SNPNC, told AFP, who had called for the movement of the some 300 hostesses and stewards of the company in France. For Sunday, the nine flights departing from or arriving in Bordeaux are canceled out of 36, according to a spokesperson for Bordeaux-Mérignac airport.
In Marseille, 12 flights should be canceled, according to a spokesperson for Marseille Provence airport. “When they saw the strike looming, they started giving us water on the planes, which was one of the things we had been asking for for a long time. Three days ago we were granted two liters of water per member of staff across Europe. Before, we had to bring our own water on board”, said Damien Mourgues, recalling that the first demand was “wage and working conditions”. In France, it is Marseille airport – where Ryanair has based five planes – which was the most affected on Saturday by the movement with about fifteen canceled flights, or “25% of the daily Ryanair program at the airport. ” according to the airport, which evokes a “limited impact”.
In Bordeaux (3 aircraft based), 14 flights were canceled on Saturday out of the 26 scheduled for the day, and two in Beauvais, where Ryanair has two aircraft based.
According to the Ryanair Scorebuddy site listing all cancellations of low-cost airline flights based in Ireland, Charleroi airport in Belgium was the most affected, with 44 return flights canceled on Saturday. The company did not respond to AFP’s requests. She explains to some of her passengers by text, of which AFP has received a copy, that the disturbances are linked to a strike on Saturday in an air traffic control center in Marseille. “Which will allow her to invoke the air traffic control strike to not refund the tickets of passengers whose flights passing through the area above Marseille have been canceled”, fears another union source.
In Spain, 12 flights were canceled on Saturday in Madrid, Barcelona, Palma, Ibiza, Santiago and Gerona, according to the USO union (Union Sindical Obrera) which denounced the replacement of striking Spanish employees by staff from Morocco, an operation deemed ” illegal” because it violates the right to strike, according to Lidia Arasanz of the USO.