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German airport disruption expected to last 'until October'

The Local Germany
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German airport disruption expected to last 'until October'
People arrive at Berlin Brandenburg airport in July. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Jörg Carstensen

Passengers flying in and out of Germany will have to deal with disruption until October, aviation experts say.

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Whether it's queuing for hours at security, flights being cancelled or luggage going missing, travelling by air in Germany has been nothing short of a nightmare.

And, although the aviation sector says there are signs that things could be easing off very slightly, weeks of disruption lie ahead.

"The situation is stabilising," said head of the airport association ADV, Ralph Beisel. "The ad hoc measures introduced are having an effect.

"Nevertheless, we are not satisfied. The current conditions do not meet our demands."

Beisel said improvements in the situation can only be expected from October, when the peak travel season is over. According to data collected by the Institute of the German Economy, airports are currently short of up to 7,000 skilled workers.

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In order to help the baggage-handling situation at German airports, up to 2,000 temporary employees are being sought from Turkey.

However, the relevant applications for staff background checks have not yet been submitted, various authorities at airports across Germany confirmed to Welt newspaper.

"As things stand, there are no applications here for potential employees from Turkey," said a spokesman for the Frankfurt police headquarters.

Due to the pressure on airports, the aviation industry is urging authorities to carry out background checks as quickly as possible as soon as they arrive. 

"A processing time of two weeks should be possible," Beisel said.

But German authorities have rejected demands from the aviation industry to speed up background checks in view of the lack of personnel at airports.

"Simplifications or downgrading of the background checks are not possible," said a spokeswoman of the Berlin-Brandenburg Higher Aviation Authority.

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