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    Tom Otley


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    Tom Otley

    The above is a screenshot of a flight from Birmingham to Palma (earlier this morning). It circumnavigated French airspace which resulted in a long detour. Many flights are following the same principle.

    The industry body Airlines 4 Europe sent it over in illustration of the latest strike with at least 200 cancellations today during the latest Air Traffic Control (ATC) strike in France.

    Control centres in Reims and Marseille have been on strike since Monday evening. The strike will continue until Wednesday morning.

    There have been more than 250 strike days since 2004, the A4E group says.

    A4E is calling on the French government to use its upcoming “Assises de la mobilité” (National Mobility Summit) on 19 September to identify new priorities in terms of mobility and transport and to consider measures capable of improving the predictability of strikes’ impact and decrease their damage to the French and European economy.

    “In June, the European Commission published its Communication “Aviation: an Open and Connected Europe” in an effort to enhance airspace efficiency and connectivity. The Commission rightly encourages Member States and stakeholders, including social partners, to take action to improve service continuity in air traffic management. Political, operational and technological solutions exist for a problem that affects the whole continent. Limiting the impact of Air Traffic Management strikes on travellers and business, without questioning controllers’ fundamental right to strike, is a key objective of A4E.”

    “Solutions A4E has called for encompass the compulsory minimum of 72 hours notification of participation in a strike, which should be implemented by European States where possible and practical, and an upper airspace evolution away from geographical dependency enabling European passengers to make uninterrupted journeys throughout the continent.”

    “During the 2010-16 period, there were 217 ATC strike days in the EU – one disrupted day every nine days. In total, there were 278 disrupted days if you take into account the days before and after an ATC strike as flights had to be cancelled in advance and accumulated delays spilt over to the next day. Since 2010 the overall impact of ATC strikes have cost €12 billion to the EU economy, associated with more than 140,000 jobs.”



    are these strikes continuing… I have colleagues flying Palma – Frankfurt later this week?



    There are Strikes by Aena for many dates in September October November and December starting 22nd September. It relates to Malaga Airport but do not know of other Spanish Airports are affected.
    Its starts on 22nd as they have postponed 17th September while the continue to talk so it is possible that the may postpone further.
    I am flying BA into Malaga on 24th (one of the confirmed strike days) and asked them if I can switch to GIB but they say no at the moment.



    Planned Strike dates
    The 15th and 17th are cancelled

    September: 15, 17, 22, 24 and 29

    October; 1, 6, 11, 15, 27, 30 and 31

    November: 3 and 5

    December: 1, 4, 5, 7, 8, 10, 26, 27, 28, 29 and 30



    God bless the French. We Brits taught them everything they know about strikes!



    This screen shot is very impressive.

    However I really wonder who is responsible for this circumnavigation of French airspace yesterday morning.

    The flight on the screenshot is Thomas Cook morning flight from BXH to PMI MT1248 which lasted almost one hour more than usual due to this circumnavigation. Interestingly Thomas Cook is not a member of Airline4Europe.

    All 3 other flights from BHX to PMI on the same day were able to have the most direct route you can imagine between BXH and PMI which made it possible for them to land almost on time or ahead of schedule.

    https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flights/zb950#ed715dd departed 25mn after MT1248 and arrived 20minutes ahead of schedule

    https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flights/zb956#ed55289 arrived 00:21 minutes ahead of schedule

    https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flights/fr2162#ed5e76e arrivede 00:19 minutes behind schedule

    About 20 fligts flew from London to Palma on the same day. One was cancelled. All others departed and all of them but two used the same very direct route. Can you imagine that both flights who were “obliged” to circumnvavigate French airspace were Thomas Cook flights ?

    https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flights/mt1352#ed3ebed 1 hour behind schedule

    https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flights/mt1216#ed41377 2 hours behind schedule after a circumnavgiation of French airspace + another detour via Madrid for an unkwnown reason (probably another strike in Spain ?).

    https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flights/u22271#ed3e191 00h10 minutes behind schedule

    https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flights/u27421#ed3f7c6 00:20 minutes ahead of schedule

    https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flights/zb220#ed4011f 00:13 minutes behind schedule

    https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flights/ls1529#ed42810 00:36 minutes behind schedule

    https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flights/zb872#ece1ded 00:38 behind schedule

    https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flights/u28621#ed45c73 1:41 behind schedule

    https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flights/ba8485#ed448af 00:31 behind schedule

    https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flights/zb224#ed4384d 00:08 ahead of schedule

    https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flights/u28625#ed48cf8 00:02 behind schedule

    https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flights/fr8386#ed4b5dd 00:18 ahead of schedule

    Most of other flight from UK airport didn’t have to circumnavigate French Airspace nor did they were late.

    Another interesting information is that more than 50% of the flights which were cancelled on monday (110/200) were flights operated by Ryanair which seems to suffer a lack of pilots …


    What is right, what is wrong, what is strategy in all this ???



    HKTbound, the strikes have been postponed until the end of October given the meetings between government and unions had initially gone well. If there is no agreement before the end of October the strikes will be reinstated albeit the unions have to give 10 days notice of starting a strike

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