BlueFlyer From United States of America, joined Jan 2006, 3473 posts, RR: 1 Posted (5 years 4 months 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 3776 times:
BRU is currently closed due to a strike by employees of the airport's two handling companies. Aviapartner's ground handlers have been striking since Sunday night, resulting in cancellations or diversions of their airline customers (CO60 landed in AMS for instance), but airlines handled by FlightCare were operating normally.
That is, until some FlightCare employees decided to strike as well. Only two flights have been able to take off between 10 and 11 am. All other flights are either canceled or delayed.
FlightCare's strike was a surprise and has stranded several carriers. AA, DL, UA and 9W landed normally this morning, for instance, but they have no idea when they'll be able to leave again...
BlueFlyer From United States of America, joined Jan 2006, 3473 posts, RR: 1 Reply 2, posted (5 years 4 months 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 3703 times:
You're quite correct, I should have phrased myself much better to say that, since some FlightCare employees walked off the job at 10, only two flights (now four) have managed to take off, and with heavy delays. The rest is being canceled, or heavily delayed, and will be leaving without luggage.
The planes that you have been hearing take off are planes that were handled by FlightCare prior to their employees striking, or Aviapartners planes that managed to get on the runway without ground handlers, and with much delays.
Quoting BrightCedars (Reply 1): There wasn't even a warning, I feel it's sad to take people hostage in these days and times.
Oh, the situation could go back to normal within 10 minutes. All that needs to happen is for Aviapartners and FlightCare to agree to the demands the unions have made. Yes, demand is the actual word they used... Not proposal, or offer, but demand....
BrightCedars From Belgium, joined Nov 2004, 1282 posts, RR: 2 Reply 6, posted (5 years 4 months 2 days 12 hours ago) and read 3439 times:
Quoting Soups (Reply 5): Anybody knows what is SV is doing in BRU Flying JFK-BRU? SV900 (Unknown A/C)
I can see SV926 727F on BRU-RUH
Is this 727f flying JFK-BRU-RUH on a regular basis?
Hello there! We usually only get SV cargo metal and either M1F or 74F, so I presume this is one of the regular cargo visitor from the Kingdom. The cargo timetable on the airport website might shed some light on this, once the website returns to full content service.
OkJET From Czech Republic, joined Jan 2006, 17 posts, RR: 0 Reply 10, posted (5 years 4 months 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 3039 times:
I think the strike was supposed to finish at 1600Z but not sure if it really happened. However AY812 left BRU without any PAX on board after sitting on tarmac for couple of hours.
BTW does anyone know the reason for the strike? Money perhaps...
BlueFlyer From United States of America, joined Jan 2006, 3473 posts, RR: 1 Reply 11, posted (5 years 4 months 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 2998 times:
UA has now canceled 951. Other airlines are either canceling their flights as well, or operating them with at least 30 minutes' delay while their own staff do the handling.
Quoting OkJET (Reply 10): BTW does anyone know the reason for the strike? Money perhaps...
For once, it isn't really money but staffing levels. The agreement between the two handling companies and the employees' union calls for 5 handlers to turn a plane (might be less for smaller planes, I'm not privy to all the details). The employees are complaining that both companies are short-staffed and it is now the norm to turn a plane with as few as three employees.
The two handling companies retort that it does happen, but if and when it does, it is due to delayed or diverted flights, or to an abnormally high rate of employee absence.
Bwest From Belgium, joined Jul 2006, 1329 posts, RR: 4 Reply 12, posted (5 years 4 months 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 2970 times:
You can check out departures and arrivals on BRU's (heavily slimmed down) website.
A second agreement between the Aviapartner unions and the management has in the meantime also been turned down by the staff. According to Brussels Airlines, more people, from other handling companies are joining the strike.
Even if the strike was to end this night, it's gonna take some time for operations to return to normal at BRU.
The airport authorities have now called all their personnel into action, to inform passengers and distribute water to those waiting.
Krist0f From Belgium, joined May 2005, 38 posts, RR: 0 Reply 15, posted (5 years 4 months 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 2707 times:
I was caught in the middle of this strike yesterday, flying to DUB in the morning and back at night. Although I experienced only a delay of several hours yesterday mainly in the morning and missed part of my meetings in Dublin but that wasn't too bad compared to some other passengers. Anyways, upon return to Brussels last night, the baggage claim area was pretty much a mess with many people attempting to locate their luggage. I was traveling on business so for me I was not so much affected on my personal time, however I feel bad for the people who were leaving on or returning from holidays and whose holiday plans were partly disrupted by actions of a mere few. Anyways, I'm not going to rant about my discontent in this matter and my opinion on such strikes so all one could convey to the baggage handlers on strike is... If they don't like their job conditions, like any other honest working person in the world they should just go find another job that does fit their needs rather than paralyze part of the business at BRU with little or no regard for the passengers! I would like to end on a positive note by stating that I am very impressed with all the other staff at Brussels Airport and the airlines who did continue to work very hard to limit some of the impact of this strike.
BrightCedars From Belgium, joined Nov 2004, 1282 posts, RR: 2 Reply 17, posted (5 years 4 months 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 2557 times:
I really wonder what the overseeing authority is doing in terms of enforcing passenger rights as airlines are clearly not all inclined to promote and respect them, unlike they are compelled to.
I do understand the circumstances but having passengers of all ages being bussed and in charge of their luggage to regional airports and then spending hours there without information or compensation (I mean drinks and snacks) goes out of the way.
Even if the airlines are not responsible of the strike and are in fact victims, the passengers are much less responsible and did contract the airlines to provide proper contingencies in such difficult situations. I'm not even saying the airlines should cash out compensation although definitely at least free re-booking (rather than refund) must be offered when the flight is 5 hours late as stipulated by EU law.
A strike is in no way an unforeseeable event, especially when it enters it's 3rd day.
Best wishes to all those traveling in, out and through Brussels in these delicate times.
Tayloss From United Kingdom, joined Mar 2004, 50 posts, RR: 0 Reply 19, posted (5 years 4 months 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 2491 times:
I got caught in this today when flying in from SOU to BRU on the FlyBE 1846.. They diverted to Lille and bussed us to the airport from there.. 2 1/2 hrs from Lille to BRU.. all in all 6 hrs to et into Brussels downtown!
Its been announced on the news here in that the strike has been called off and normal service will be resumed tomorrow.. I am flying back on friday, so hopoefully all will be ok.. However, there was flights taking off as one of the care team advised that the flight crew and airport staff loaded alot of the aircraft..
BlueFlyer From United States of America, joined Jan 2006, 3473 posts, RR: 1 Reply 21, posted (5 years 4 months 20 hours ago) and read 2352 times:
Quoting Tayloss (Reply 19): Its been announced on the news here in that the strike has been called off and normal service will be resumed tomorrow..
FlightCare employees have rejected the company's offer to end the strike by a 55% majority, but they needed a 2/3 majority at the same time to continue the strike, therefore the strike at FlightCare is "officially" over, even though some employees are still refusing to return to work.
At AviaPartner, 70% of the employees voted to reject the latest offer and continue striking, and so on goes the strike.
Operating out of BRU, with heavy delays. Not too many airports in the neighborhood can handle an extra 6 WBs a day at almost the same time with little to no notice.
Quoting BrightCedars (Reply 17): I do understand the circumstances but having passengers of all ages being bussed and in charge of their luggage to regional airports and then spending hours there without information or compensation (I mean drinks and snacks) goes out of the way.
CO has been rerouting its EWR-BRU to AMS, which seems a bit strange considering that AA, DL, UA and US all manage to operate their flights in/out of BRU, with long delays of course, but nothing of the kind that involves a road trek to AMS.
The interesting, unexpected, consequence from the strike is that the Belgian transport minister is threatening to amend the law that limits ground handling companies at BRU to two (it was set to expire in 2011). He is to talk to SN and LH about setting up a third handling company. I don't know what SN will say but LH has in the past shown interest in setting up a handling dept at BRU.
His beef is both with the union that can use the employees at both companies to create havoc and that claimed to know a strike was coming but didn't say anything, and with management who left on vacation at one of the busiest times of the year when employees were clearly not happy.
BrightCedars From Belgium, joined Nov 2004, 1282 posts, RR: 2 Reply 23, posted (5 years 4 months 15 hours ago) and read 2259 times:
Quoting BlueFlyer (Reply 21): The interesting, unexpected, consequence from the strike is that the Belgian transport minister is threatening to amend the law that limits ground handling companies at BRU to two (it was set to expire in 2011). He is to talk to SN and LH about setting up a third handling company. I don't know what SN will say but LH has in the past shown interest in setting up a handling dept at BRU.
These guys need to feel the heat of competition, I'm even surprised this duopoly is allowed in the first place. I definitely think SN should take care of its own handling, I would want to have this aspect of my business in my own hands if I was in their seat, I believe it is a core activity. Sure it can be through an affiliate but you need to have control over it.