Air traffic

Argentinian air traffic controllers warn they could go on strike, ground flights — MercoPress

Argentinian air traffic controllers warn they could go on strike and ground flights

Thursday, February 17, 2022 – 09:42 UTC

Union action could include suspending take-off clearances, ATEPSA says

Argentinian air traffic controllers have warned they could go on strike in the coming days, causing a major setback to operations nationwide as the holiday season draws to a close and classes are on the point to resume.

Controllers could start their measures on Friday and also said they could intensify if time passed and no agreement was reached on their work demands.

However, the Aviation Safety and Security Technicians and Employees Association (ATEPSA) union said their protests would not affect flights during the Feb. 28 and March 1 carnival holidays.

ATEPSA unites air traffic controllers, aeronautical information service providers, and search and rescue and aviation technicians at all airports and airfields nationwide.

The union said in a statement that “since February 18, [we] will gradually resume legitimate industrial action measures which will include the suspension of take-off authorizations for commercial flights, cargo and aviation in general throughout the national territory.

Aviation business sources said the measures were “irrational” and disproportionate, as they generate “uncertainty in all sectors that benefit from the arrival of tourists, and jeopardize the return of families” to time for back to school.

“We regret this decision by the union. After the worst crisis the airline industry has ever known and facing the first summer of real activity since the start of the pandemic, they do not even have the slightest will to preserve the summer season and, even worse, the return of the holidays carnival, which is the one that generates the most movement throughout the year”, they pointed out.

The ATEPSA workers have been offered a 55% wage increase for the year 2021, the strike “therefore has no other explanation than the irrationality of union sectors more concerned with solving their internal problems”. [feuds] only in the definitive recovery of the airline industry in the country.