Airline chaos must be addressed before summer peak: Lockhart

Airline chaos must be addressed before summer peak: Lockhart
Staff reporter


Staff reporter


DUP MP Carla Lockhart has spoken with Transport Secretary Grant Shapps MP to urge the Government to support airlines and airports in sorting out the ongoing chaos with cancelled flights.

The Upper Bann representative also urged the Transport Secretary to ensure the speedy payment by airlines of reimbursements and compensation for travellers affected.

Speaking in Westminster, Carla Lockhart said: “Across a number of airlines – easyJet, British Airways and Wizz Air – thousands of passengers have been impacted by the cancellation of flights. On a single day last week, easyJet cancelled sixty flights, leaving customers stranded in airports thousands of miles from home.

"Not only is this hugely disruptive to travel plans, it is also extremely stressful for those impacted. Facing the need to find alternative flights or to extend hotel stays, the financial pressures are also significant.

"It is vital that airlines and airports end this chaos now. We have not reached the peak passenger numbers we will see during the summer months. If solutions are not found soon, then the likelihood is that even greater disruption will be seen during July and August. Such uncertainty is totally unacceptable for customers who want to switch off and enjoy a well-earned, stress free holiday.

"Whilst the onus is on airlines and airports to meet their obligations to customers, I have also urged the Transport Secretary to explore all options open to him to help bring about a restoration of normal services. I was encouraged to hear of the measures put in place already however, more needs done. Staffing is a huge problem and importantly, the Government must press the airlines for the immediate reimbursements of cancelled flights, and the swift payment of compensation.

"Solutions to this situation are urgent, and I hope for the peace of mind of all customers that the necessary steps are taken to protect the interests of passengers."

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