Pilots' protest cripples activity of Romania's flag carrier Tarom

Pilots' protest cripples activity of Romania's flag carrier Tarom

Romania's state-operated airline Tarom announced it canceled tens of flights that were scheduled to land or take off from Bucharest's Henri Coandă Airport (Otopeni) on July 8. The situation remains uncertain for July 9 after a large number of the company's pilots relied on a form of protest by declaring themselves "unfit for work" - under a provision that allows them to refuse to work for up to 48 hours.

The company lost some EUR 2.5 million, enough to cover the requested wage hikes for an entire year, according to the trade union SPLR, which argued that due to the low wages, the personnel trained by the company ended up working for other companies, G4media.ro reported.

The company's pilots have decided to stop reporting for work due to several issues related to flight safety and the wages they receive, which, according to Tarom pilot (and former management member) Cezar Osiceanu quoted by Digi24, are much lower than other air carriers.

"It's a management problem. Within 5 years, 19 head managers have changed [at Tarom]. And none of them had anything to do with aviation. They were paint sellers, car sellers, sheet metal sellers, and so on," Osiceanu explained.

Transport minister Sorin Grindeanu claimed that the pilots asked for a 40% wage hike and that Tarom's management has been negotiating with the pilots during the whole day of July 8. He argued that although the company received EUR 100 million in state aid, it has not yet downsized its personnel, which at 1,200 is still 50% above that justified by the volume of activity, complicating the wage hikes.

"I'm not saying that it's not normal to have claims, but to cancel the flight two minutes before departure is a more than inappropriate situation. I hope that from tomorrow morning [July 9] the company will return to the usual flight schedule," Grindeanu said.

He assured that all passengers who could not travel because of the pilots' protests should be fairly compensated.

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(Photo source: Colicaranica/Dreamstime.com)

  • https://www.msn.com/en-xl/news/other/pilots-protest-cripples-activity-of-romania-s-flag-carrier-tarom/ar-BB1pEpr9?ocid=00000000

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