Travel chaos as China Airlines cancelled over 20 flights due to Pilots strike affecting 30,000 passengers.
At least six flights to and from Taiwan has been cancelled on 8th Friday and Saturday, affecting more than 4,000 passengers.
Around 700 Pilots are expected take part in a strike called by the China Airlines branch of ‘Pilots Union Taoyuan’.
Pilots Union Taoyuan, are demanding better pay, subsidies and specially better working hours. “We are asking the company to remove factors that cause pilots fatigue and threaten flight safety,” said Lee Hsin-yen, chairwoman of the Pilots Union Taoyuan, at a news conference.
Unions says that Airline should assign four pilots and co-pilots instead of the usual three to all flights scheduled to take more than 12 hours, while flights taking at least eight hours need three flight crew members instead of two.
China Airlines says it has increased annual manpower costs by NT$120 million ($3.89 million) to meet some of the demands by the pilots, and have one of the best-paid jobs in Taiwan, with a monthly salary of NT$340,000 (US$11,000) and a wealth of other benefits, including an aviation safety bonus and long holidays.
The union said the employers were “using so-called ‘company competitiveness’ as an excuse and totally neglecting air safety as well as the situation of pilots being overworked”. It issued a condemnation, adding it “had no choice” and was “immediately preparing to stage a strike at any time”.
The strike disrupted the travel itineraries of more than 30,000 passengers, including around 5,300 Taiwanese who were stranded overseas.