Socialist Worker

Cloud of bosses’ lies appears after volcano erupts

Issue No. 2198

Airline bosses are demanding that profits are put first during the Icelandic volcano crisis.

Willie Walsh, the bully boy head of British Airways, called restrictions on air travel “unnecessary” after he took part in a test flight.

Walsh remained unscathed. But claims that it is “safe” to fly through ash are nonsense.

Volcanic ash erodes and clogs aircraft engines. As Stewart John, a fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, put it, “The dust blocks up all of the ventilation holes.”

The airlines even have the gall to demand another government bailout.

Easyjet boss Andy Harrison said, “The government is responsible for caring for its citizens during a natural disaster, not airlines, therefore it should return people home as soon as possible and cover the costs of hotels and repatriation.”

Bosses are also threatening to cut the pay of some workers who normally maintain aircraft and airports to save cash.

One real lesson of the travel chaos is the lack of spare capacity in European rail services—a result of underinvestment and privatisation.

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Tue 20 Apr 2010, 18:02 BST
Issue No. 2198
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