UK strike having limited impact on transport

30th Nov 2011
UK strike having limited impact on transport

A general strike in the United Kingdom has so far resulted in only minor delays at airports and terminals across the country.

UK Border Agency (UKBA) staff are undertaking industrial action alongside nearly two million other public sector employees in a dispute over pension provision.

However, both Heathrow Airport and Gatwick Airport in London, the two busiest in the country, have so far reported only minor problems.

“We have robust plans in place to help keep delays at the border zones to a minimum,” said Scott Stanley, Gatwick Airport chief operating officer.

Stanley added there was an increased threat of disruption during the day as more flights began to arrive at the airport.

“To help avoid overcrowding, we have reconfigured both our airside terminals to provide significantly more space and seating for arriving passengers,” he explained.

“Hundreds of Gatwick staff and volunteers are in the terminals today to provide assistance to passengers.

“Seated reception areas have been set up where games, activities and large TV plasma screens showing films have been made available to provide some respite to waiting passengers and children.”

Similar provisions are in place at Heathrow, with passengers advised to check the status of flights with airlines.

Manchester Airport in the north of the country also said the situation remained calm, reaffirming industrial action will not affect departing passengers.

Arrivals were also “operating normally”, a spokesperson said.

A statement from Eurostar confirmed there were presently no delays.

However, the cross-channel train operator did warn passengers to be aware of the industrial action, advising arriving at departure gates an hour early.

“As it is likely that fewer UKBA staff than normal will be available at our Paris and Brussels terminals, passengers may encounter delays upon check-in, in particular in the afternoon.

“Trains could also be delayed on departure,” explained a statement.

More information here.


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