MIAMI — The world’s seventh busiest airport, London-Heathrow, continues to face a difficult week as the threat of staff strikes disrupt its operations.
Staff workers had announced a two-day strike on August 5-6, however, the first day’s protest was suspended following some last-minute negotiations between both parties.
More than 177 flights were initially canceled on August 5, though some were reinstated once the negotiations cleared.
The reasons for the strikes is down to one of the UK’s largest worker unions, Unite. Heathrow and Unite are holding last-minute talks, as the airport’s management hopes to avoid a strike for tomorrow August.
Today, the strike for both days was called off following an agreement between the two parties.
Heathrow has proposed a 7.3% pay rise for the next two and a half years in order to avoid further strikes and is hoping that this increment will be sufficient to avoid further protests by the unions.
Unite has more than 4,400 members working at Heathrow.
A Heathrow spokesperson has said that Unite has chosen to postpone their strike action today. “Strike action on Tuesday 6 August is still scheduled to go ahead,” however.
“We are continuing talks with Unite today and we remain hopeful that we can find a resolution and stop this disruptive and unnecessary threat of strike action,” the spokesperson added.
“We regret that passengers have been inconvenienced by this and urge them to contact their airline for up-to-date information on the status of their service.”
Some flights have moved to London-Gatwick or Birmingham, as well as other London Airports.
Virgin Atlantic has moved three of its Boeing 787 flights to London-Gatwick, while Qatar Airways has also moved two of their departures to that airport. Lufthansa has also canceled three of its daily flights to London from Germany today.
Additionally, airlines have been rebooking passengers onto other flights from other airports to minimize disruption. A number of European carriers fly to multiple London Airports, meaning they have been able to mitigate the situation with ease.
Heathrow Airport has also stated that all passengers are advised to arrive at the airport earlier, as there are long queues to pass through airport security.