French Air Traffic Control strikes anew

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

The French Air Traffic Control has gone on strike for the seventh time this year. Since Monday afternoon, employees have stopped working in an action that will likely go on until Wednesday morning.

An estimated 1000 flights departing from Paris, Beauvais, Lyon, Nice, Marseille, Toulouse, Bordeaux and Nantes are severely delayed or cancelled. The French Directorate General for Civil Aviation has requested airlines to decrease their flights by 30 percent. However, it is not only flights that depart from France that are affected, those flying over the country are also likely to experience a delay or cancellation.

A study by the European Commission has shown that since 2005, seven out of ten aviation strikes have taken place in France. The French Air Traffic Control has gone on strike for a total of 252 days since 2005, while there are other European countries that have never ceased their operations. These strikes have cost France approximately 1.4 billion Euros in revenue from tourism and trade sectors thus far.

In regards to compensation, passengers affected by an aviation strike are unfortunately not entitled to compensation. It is only when an airline’s own staff goes on strike that compensation is due. As the French Air Traffic Control is separate from any airlines themselves, it is out of the airline’s realm of influence and the airline cannot be held liable for any delays or cancellations.