Ryanair is ramping up pressure on Brussels to take action against striking air traffic controllers as it was forced to ground more than 100 flights today due to the latest walk-out in France.
Europe’s largest low-cost carrier warned that the fourth strike by French controllers in the last six weeks and 44th time in seven years would also lead to flight delays.
The airline advised passengers travelling today to check the status of their flight on the Ryanair.com website before travelling to the airport.
All those affected were urged to sign its Keep Europe’s Skies Open petition, which the carrier will present to the European Commission once it reaches one million signatures.
EasyJet and British Airways are among other airlines forced to cancel flights to and from French airports as well as those flying in French airspace today.
BA said: “Unfortunately in addition to cancelling some flights to and from France, other short-haul flights may also experience some disruption, given how many flights would normally use French airspace.”
Ryanair chief marketing officer, Kenny Jacobs, said: “Once more Europe’s consumers are being held to ransom by tiny French ATC unions, causing hundreds of thousands of passenger flights to be cancelled or delayed.
“We urge every disrupted customer to sign up to Ryanair’s petition, KeepEuropesSkiesOpen.com, and we call on the European Commission to prevent Europe’s skies being closed by French ATC yet again.
“How many more flights and customers will be disrupted before the Commission finally takes action?”
Ryanair and other EU airlines have repeatedly called on the Commission to introduce measures to alleviate the impact of ATC strikes on consumers.
French ATC unions should be obliged to engage in binding arbitration instead of strikes to resolve their claims and other air traffic controllers should be allowed to operate flights over France while ATC unions are on strike.
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