LONDON: Sky News reported Friday that there are fears that United Kingdom’s London Gatwick Airport could face operational hurdles as almost 1,000 workers are set to stage an eight-day strike later this month.
The union Unite announced that the staff — including baggage handlers and check-in staff — are set to strike over a pay dispute at the start of the school summer holidays.
Significant disruption, delays and cancellations are “inevitable”, the union said.
The union said the workers would initially stage the strike for four days — from July 28 (Friday) to August 1 (Tuesday).
Then, they will strike for another four days — from August 4 (Friday) to August 8 (Tuesday).
“Given the scale of the industrial action, disruption, delays and cancellations are inevitable across the airport,” Unite said in its statement.
The latest threat comes as hundreds of thousands of flights across Europe this summer are already in jeopardy after air traffic controllers decided to take strike action.
“Up to 12,600 flights every day — around a third of the journeys made across the continent during the peak summer holiday period — could be delayed or cancelled as a result of the industrial action,” the media outlet reported.
Gatwick, which is located about 30 miles south of London, said it would support airlines with their contingency plans to ensure flights operate as scheduled.
A key hub for leisure flights to southern European beach destinations, easyJet, TUI and British Airways all operate hundreds of daily flights.
EasyJet has already axed 2% of its summer flight schedule, mostly from Gatwick, over concerns that air traffic control issues will impact its schedule.