Europe

SAS pilots agree to continue flying

Yet another threat of strike by Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) pilots next week has been averted. The pilots’ union could confirm Saturday that a majority of them had approved a new contract with SAS management, and they will continue to fly.

Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) ticket-holders breathed a sigh of relief this weekend after SAS pilots voted to accept a terminated contract after a 15-day strike.. Photo: SAS

They have been evaluating new contracts and voting individually over the past two weeks.many people had Criticized by local mediathey claimed they were effectively forced to buy back their jobs. principles in jeopardythey argued, threatened the Scandinavian labor model.

Officials from the four unions representing SAS pilots were able to announce that a majority of Norwegian pilots had chosen to accept the new contract after the vote ended at midnight on Friday. Sweden and Denmark The “majority” of the pilots also accepted the terms.

“Many people voted against their will. I voted with my head rather than my heart,” Jan Levi Skogvang, leader of one of SAS’ two Norwegian pilots’ unions, told Radio Norwegian (NRK). “Some people voted in solidarity with those who were laid off.” They will now get their jobs back, although wages will be lower and weekly shifts longer.

SAS, on the other hand, remains stuck in what Skogvang calls “difficult” economic conditions, adding that the alternative – refusal of the contract – entails many uncertainties. SAS is currently in bankruptcy proceedings to protect it from its creditors, but it should emerge as a viable concern from there.

A 15-day pilot strike at the height of the summer vacation season in July cost the SAS another hefty loss. About 4,000 flights were canceled, affecting at least 380,000 passengers, costing the airline well over his 1 billion Swedish kronor. Airlines are now also facing hefty compensation claims from stranded passengers who have had to purchase new tickets and pay for emergency hotel accommodations.

SAS has so far been slow to respond to compensation claims required by law.Norwegian National Aviation Authority Luftfartstilsynet has asked SAS to process the claim more quickly and will monitor SAS’ response.

NRK reported that after receiving several complaints from SAS passengers, authorities sent a written warning to SAS management demanding payment of compensation. A customer may request a refund within 7 days of flight cancellation, and aviation authorities do not allow extension of the deadline.

Aviation Authority Attorney General Nina B. Bindvik told NRK she understands that SAS is almost overwhelmed with demands for compensation. resources. The Norwegian Consumer Affairs Council has also been overwhelmed by complaints from SAS passengers that their trips have been ruined and costs higher due to the pilots’ strike.

SAS responded to the aviation authority’s letter, claiming it has tripled its customer service staff to handle compensation claims. “We expect SAS to do everything possible to ensure the rights of the passengers and that compensation will be paid without unnecessary delay,” Vindovic told NRK.

NewsinEnglish.no/Nina Berglund

https://www.newsinenglish.no/2022/08/06/sas-pilots-agree-to-keep-flying/ SAS pilots agree to continue flying

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