Scandinavian airline estimates pilots’ unions striking will lead to cancellation of half its flights
Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) said on Monday that members of its pilots’ unions were going on strike as the airline saw dozens of flights canceled by that morning.
Data from the flight tracking website FlightAware showed that SAS was the airline with the second-highest number of canceled flights on Monday morning, with more than 120 nixed so far for the day. More than 20 flights from SAS have also been delayed. Several of the canceled flights were scheduled to fly into U.S. cities, as well as other locations around the world.
“A strike at this point is devastating for SAS and puts the company’s future together with the jobs of thousands of colleagues at stake. The decision to go on strike now demonstrates reckless behavior from the pilots’ unions and a shockingly low understanding of the critical situation that SAS is in,” Anko van der Werff, president and CEO of SAS, said in a statement.
The strike came in the wake of failed negotiations between the pilots’ unions and SAS that began after a conflict notice was given on June 9, SAS noted in a press release.
The Scandinavian airline estimated about 30,000 passengers will be impacted each day by the striking and about half of its scheduled flights will be canceled.
The development comes as the airline industry struggles to keep up with consumer travel demand amid the COVID-19 pandemic after the earlier stages of the coronavirus saw bookings plunge. A number of pilots had retired or been furloughed during that time period.
Hundreds of flights within, into or out of the United States had been canceled by noon Saturday, with many more delayed. As of Monday morning, more than 150 such flights scheduled for the day had been canceled.