LOW COST, HIGH RISK
EurECCA raises concerns that refusal to respect EU and national legislation may jeopardise passenger and crew safety on low cost airline.
Press Release – Brussels 4 July 2018 – EurECCA, the European Cabin Crew Association representing more than 35,000 cabin crew, is raising serious concerns that the refusal of one particular low cost airline to respect EU Flight Time Limitations (FLT) legislation could lead to risks in terms of passenger and crew safety. EurECCA is calling for the European Commission, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASE) and the Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) to investigate the budget airline’s non-compliance and to take appropriate action to address this issue.
This call to action has been precipitated by a recent incident where four cabin crew were sacked for following EU regulation that stipulates that for safety reasons pilots and cabin crew are not allowed to operate as crew members in an aircraft if they believe they are unfit to do so. They had been requested to operate an additional flight and to fly above the legal limit (14 hours non-stop instead of the legal maximum 12), which they are exceptionally allowed to do on two conditions:
- if the crew deems themselves fit enough to do so and
- if the Captain authorises it.
In the interest of passenger safety the four cabin crew, who had operated a particularly onerous flight schedule that day, declared themselves unfit to operate beyond the normal legal maximum duty period and as a result the flight was not operated.
Instead of applauding the crew members for their responsible behaviour and for exercising their legal obligations under aviation regulations, the budget airline has taken disciplinary action and dismissed them.