British Airways canceled four more flights at Heathrow Airport today to support ground services, which are suffering from a shortage of staff in the provision of 74 services.
On Monday, the airline warned passengers about canceled flights after management decided to reduce the schedule until the end of May. She then stopped 62 flights, 12 of which at the last minute. Another six were canceled yesterday as a result of a large number of COVID-19 employees, the BBC reported.
The low-cost airline EasyJet suspended 30 flights at Gatwick Airport on Wednesday, disrupting a two-week Easter holiday for thousands of Britons, for whom it was the first trip outside the country since the COVID-19 restrictions were lifted. EasyJet cites a lack of staff and twice as many employees as usual. A spokesman for the company said the affected routes were to Amsterdam, Krakow, Bologna, and Berlin.
Resignations were also pouring in – yesterday Karen Smart, managing director of Manchester airport, announced her resignation. This came after the mayor of the city Andy Burnham called on police, fire, and civil protection officers to get involved in managing the situation.
Tim Dennis, director of Newquay Cornwall Airport and a former head of Monarch Airlines, said the labor market crisis and poor planning had led to problems in Manchester and Heathrow. According to him, it takes at least three months to recruit and train new security personnel. He predicts that at least until mid-June there will be no significant relief from the flight situation.
Transport chaos in Britain
Transport chaos erupted in Britain on the 4th of this month after 120 flights to and from the UK were canceled and Eurotunnel warned of 3-hour train delays under the English Channel. The reasons are complex – the lack of staff lost by airlines over the past two years, the high tourist flow at the beginning of the Easter holidays, the easing of pandemic travel restrictions, and the significant number of COVID-19 employees, the BBC reported.
A large part of the staff of Easyjet and British Airways is in hospital, while the reason for the blocked traffic under the English Channel is a train accident, Eurotunnel clarifies.
At Birmingham and Manchester airports, passengers complain of “chaos” with long queues for arrivals and departures.
EasyJet, one of the largest airlines in Europe, announced that it was canceling 62 flights from the United Kingdom, which are a small part of Monday’s schedule, including a total of 1,645 flights. The management apologized to the disappointed tourists and explained that they tried to deal with the problem, but was forced to make changes in traffic without being able to rely on backup teams. A spokesman for the airline explained that all customers will be able to revalidate their tickets, receive a voucher for a future trip or count on a refund.
About 60 British Airways flights to and from Heathrow Airport were canceled today. For 50 of them, passengers were warned last week, but for the other ten, it happened at the last minute because of employees using the hospital. This has forced the airline to rethink and rearrange its spring schedules and abandon short-haul routes.
Eurotunnel has warned drivers traveling abroad to expect delays due to the blocked line in the tunnel connecting England with France. The operator, which operates the pipeline from Folkestone to France, warned that travel could be delayed for up to three hours.
Meanwhile, trucks have been parked in Dover for three days due to traffic disruptions. Ferry capacity has also been reduced due to ships out of order of P&O and DFDS.
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