Passengers flying out on summer holidays could breathe a sigh of relief Friday morning. Mediators of a conflict between airport management and emergency crews recommended a “pause” in negotiations, with a new strike deadline set for midnight on September 4.
“It was absolutely out of consideration for passengers that made us decide it was better to take a break instead of risking a conflict that would have affected so many,” Anne-Kari Bratten, leader of the labour organization YS Spekter, told Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK) Friday morning. She’s among those representing workers at many Norwegian airports who were ready to go out on strike from 10am Friday if no settlement was reached on pension terms, pay and benefits.
The union leaders and representatives of state airports agency Avinor at employers’ organization NHO Luftfart had negotiated for eight hours in overtime, after the strike deadline ran out at midnight Thursday. A strike would have shut down Stavanger’s airport at Sola and as well as many smaller airports around the country.
The strike would not have directly affected airports in Oslo, Bergen or Trondheim, but they were braced for flight delays and cancellations because of how the other closures would strand aircraft and disrupt the route system.
Technicians and mechanics settled with Avinor earlier this week, removing the threat of yet another strike at airports as well.