Thessaloniki, Moscow, Vienna, as well as Iasi and Cluj are destinations where hundreds of passengers could not arrive.
For two days, the flight attendants of the Romanian state-owned airline carrier Tarom refuse to work, as a masked protest, not a strike, so that many domestic and international flights were canceled. It all started on Saturday when the passengers were announced just a few minutes before boarding. Airline employees demand higher wages and to renegotiate labor contracts. Also, Sunday the company was forced to drop some voyages for the same reason, air hosts declaring themselves unfit for flying.
“Tarom announces today, October 19, irregularities on its internal and external flights. The company is facing a lack of flying crew. The passengers of canceled flights are protected on other Tarom’s air routes or other companies to reach their final destination. Tarom regrets the situation and endeavor to carrying out normal flight. The occupants of Tarom flights which show delays or cancellations will receive assistance from company’s staff under Regulation EC261 / 2004 on passenger rights. In the turn of events, we will keep you informed of the flight”, a press release reads.
The law entitles pilots and flight attendants to be declared unfit on departure day because of stress, fatigue or medical problems. Flight personnel salaries have not increased since 2008 and the unions require, among other things, the inflation indexing on all these years.
It’s not the first time when this is happening. In mid-September there has been a spontaneous protest of pilots and flight attendants for the same reasons.
Recently, Romania’s Transport Ministry announced is seeking managers for state owned airline Tarom, alongside passenger railway company CFR Calatori, railway company CFR SA, the Bucharest Airports Company and subway operator Metrorex.
“Following our understandings with international financial institutions, the selection procedures should be finalized by October 30 2014, according to a press release from the Ministry of Transport.
Lufthansa pilots plan to strike again on Monday
Additionally, Romanian company’s situation is not singular. Pilots at Lufthansa plan to strike again this week. According to usatoday.com, the Vereinigung Cockpit union that represents the pilots has announced a 35-hour labor action that would begin Monday and target the German carrier’s short-haul routes.
The union says the labor action will target pilots who fly Lufthansa’s Airbus A320, Boeing 737 and Embraer aircraft. Those planes – narrow-body jets used mostly for shorter flights – handle most of Lufthansa’s flights within Germany and within Europe. Previous strikes have targeted Lufthansa’s long-haul operations, including some fights between Germany and North America. Monday’s strike would be just the latest staged in recent month by pilots, who are mired in a disagreement with Lufthansa regarding retirement benefits.
The Associated Press says that “the two sides are fighting over the pilots’ demand that Lufthansa keep paying a transition payment for those wanting to retire early. The airline, facing tough competition from budget airlines and major Gulf carriers, wants to cut those payments.”