Air Berlin averts strike action

4 Mar 2010 by AndrewGough

The strikes which threatened to disrupt Air Berlin flights this week have been called off thanks to last minute negotiations.

In a statement today (March 4), Vereinigung Cockpit (VC), which represents around 1,400 pilots at Air Berlin and its subsidiary LTU, said there had been a “constructive exchange of views” since its members voted in favour of three-hour warning strikes last week.

VC said it had received an “improved bid” from Air Berlin following months of negotiations over unfair working conditions, and welcomed the progress made this week.

Air Berlin today confirmed that the VC’s threats of three-hour warning strikes, to be called with only hours notice, had been called off.

Air Berlin, Germany’s second largest airline after Lufthansa, said it would now hold negotiations on the remaining “unresolved issues”, which are thought to include differences in standby and rest times between Air Berlin’s pilots and those of LTU.

Last week VC’s members voted in favour of strike action, and were still ready to go through with it just yesterday (see online news March 3).

The short-notice strikes, if they had gone ahead, could have affected any number of flights, a VC spokesperson told Business Traveller yesterday.

Lufthansa and subsidiary Germanwings successfully recently cut short a four-day pilots’ strike, called again by pilots belonging to VC (see online news February 23). That strike was called off thanks to intervention by Frankfurt’s Labour Court.

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Report by Andrew Gough

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