T5 comes under further flak

10th Jul 2008

Heathrow’s T5 has come under renewed criticism after it has emerged that passengers are still losing over 900 bags per day.

Trade union Unite has said the baggage figures for passengers flying into Heathrow to catch an onward flight are still worse than for the rest of the airport. It says 80 out of 1,000 bags on connecting flights do not get to their plane, against an average of 65-70 bags for the rest of the airport.Further scrutiny came yesterday when union bosses told MPs at a House of Commons Transport Committee debate how the T5 launch fiasco could have been avoided if BA and BAA had consulted the unions.

Steve Turner from Unite said: “British Airways and (airport operator) BAA were working together over the opening but there was a complete failure to consult the trade unions.”

Union officials said T5’s baggage handling system needed to improve. Iggy Vaid, senior shop steward at the Unite union and a former T5 baggage handler, told MPs that an average 932 bags miss their onward journey from the terminal every day.

He said: “If we change the process it will get better. We have to. There is no alternative.”


The launch of the £4.3bn terminal in March was criticised as a “national humiliation” following teething troubles in the new baggage-handling system.


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