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Air traffic controller strike looms

The Local · 8 Oct 2011, 10:26

Published: 08 Oct 2011 10:26 GMT+02:00

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The country’s air traffic controllers could walk off the job as soon as next Wednesday, following the breakdown of talks with the government-owned Deutsche Flugsicherung (DFS) agency on Friday evening.

The GdF air traffic controllers’ union had called for a strike back in August, but this was averted by a labour court ruling which demanded the conflict be resolved with arbitration talks - which have now failed.

The well-paid air traffic controllers, who currently earn between €72,000 and €130,000 per year, are demanding better working conditions and more say. The DSF had already agreed to a 5.2-percent raise. The GdF will decide how to push its demands next week.

“There were lots of reasons for the [talks'] failure, but not pay,” said a DFS spokesman.

However, there could be air travel delays as early as Monday, as ground personnel hold workers’ meetings at major German airports.

Some 2,000 employees at Frankfurt Airport, Germany’s largest international hub, will take part in a one-hour discussion, according to trade union Verdi. Ground personnel representatives seen an EU push for greater competition as a potential threat to their pay and working conditions.

“We fear wage cuts as well as an expansion of part-time jobs when these ideas become law,” said Verdi board member Christine Behle.

Story continues below…

DPA/The Local/mry

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

13:47 October 8, 2011 by William Thirteen
Strike!!! This labor dispute is haunting me. I was traveling the last two planned strikes and am scheduled to travel four days this coming week. This is exactly why I prefer traveling with Deutsche Bahn when possible...
20:42 October 8, 2011 by raandy
Ronald Reagan broke the air trafic controllers strike in the USA, I have no doubt Mrs Merkel will do the same. right?
06:17 October 9, 2011 by wood artist
Between Bahn strikes, volcanoes, and pilot or controller strikes I'm getting tired of trying to schedule transportation to and within Germany. At least I don't have any immediate plans this time.

07:37 October 9, 2011 by Shirazz
To minimize inconvenience to the travelers, I strongly suggest the strikes be synchronized..

Since the ATC's have already booked next Wednesday, the pilots can take Monday, and the Bahn can take Friday.

Buses can go on strike every Sunday, it's fine.
09:08 October 9, 2011 by Englishted
What are the causes if not as stated pay ?.

Are they going to start using agencies and €400 part time workers as in many many other industries .
11:26 October 9, 2011 by auslanderus
I am not part of a union and I have not had a pay raise in 5 years and sure in heck dont make what they do. I have a friend on vacation in USA right now, will they be able to return when there vacation ends? Who will be next to go on strike for more monies and I still make the same? When is enough, enough?
17:36 October 9, 2011 by ScottishDavie

There's a short but comprehensive explanation in Der Spiegel:


The basic problem seems to be staff shortages and excessive overtime. The union has expressed concern that this could compromise safety.

I'm not taking a position on the rights and wrongs of the strike but as a fairly frequent flier I'd prefer not to have my aircraft controlled by somebody who is dead on his/her feet through exhaustion and inadequate time off. Historical references to Ronald Reagan aren't particularly constructive.
19:42 October 9, 2011 by Englishted

Thank you.


Read it ,it is not about pay.and/or join a union.

How many on this thread are only worried about themselves and their plans

no safety or anything else just me,me,me.
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