Aer Arann strike averted as union reaches deal with management

Agreement follows talks between representatives of the Irish Airline Pilots’ Association and management

A threatened strike by Aer Arann pilots, due to start next Tuesday, has been averted following an agreement between the pilots' union and Aer Arann management.

Representatives of the Irish Airline Pilots’ Association (IALPA) said the proposed deal, which has still to be balloted on by members, would re-establish pay scale progression, which had been suspended by the company in 2008.

It said the deal would also establish a retention bonus for pilots who commenced employment before July 22nd last year and who remain with Aer Arann after June 2014.

The union said the outcome also addressed pilots’ concerns about management’s willingness to seriously address the pay issue.

The agreement will now be put to a secret ballot of the Aer Arann pilots with a strong recommendation for acceptance from Aer Arann pilots’ elected representatives, the union said.

An Aer Arann spokesman said: “The strike has been averted. All services will operate fully, across all routes, at all airports.”

“We have commenced informing our customers by text, online, email and through the media that their flights will operate as scheduled. We apologise for any inconvenience caused to our customers who are, and will always be, our number one priority,” he added.

A separate ballot of Aer Lingus pilots as a result of the dispute in Aer Arann has also been halted.

More than 100 Aer Arann pilots had been threatening to strike over four days next week in a row over a pay freeze at the company.

If the strike had gone ahead, it will have affected Aer Lingus’s regional flights .

Aer Arann operates these flights as Aer Lingus Regional under a franchise from the bigger airline.

They include services to and from airports in Scotland and England such as Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Birmingham and Manchester.

Aer Lingus said earlier today it had not been notified of the ballot of its own pilots or what measures were being considered if the Aer Arann strike went ahead.

“The company has not been notified of any ballot by Aer Lingus pilots for strike action.

We plan to continue to operate our full schedule as normal,” the company said in a statement.