Lufthansa Cargo pilots to strike Thursday, in second walk out this week

Lufthansa Cargo pilots to strike Thursday, in second walk out this week

Lufthansa Cargo pilots will stage a day-long strike Thursday, the second walk out this week, in a year-long dispute over retirement benefits.

The strike, between 2 a.m. and 22.59 p.m. local time, will also ground long-haul passenger flights, which carry around 50 percent of Lufthansa Cargo’s freight in the aircrafts’ belly holds.

Lufthansa Cargo will operate all scheduled freighter flights expect a connection to Cairo, a spokesperson for the carrier said. Some flights will be rescheduled by a few hours so that they don’t fall within the strike period, she said.

This is the third time the VC pilots’ union has targeted Lufthansa’s all-cargo unit, starting with a 48-hour strike in early October and followed by a 21-hour walk out on Tuesday.

Lufthansa said it would be able to operate 35 out of 72 long haul flights from Frankfurt and Munich airports on Thursday. Volunteer pilots will staff the flights, the airline said.

Thursday’s strike will be the 10th so far this year as the VC union protests Lufthansa’s refusal to allow newly hired pilots to retire at 55 on 60 percent of their salary before regular pension payments start at 65.

Contact Bruce Barnard at brucebarnard47@hotmail.com.