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Hong Kong’s Airport Is A Mess Right Now

Hong Kong’s Airport Is A Mess Right Now
Jeff Edwards

Local media outlets report that Hong Kong International Airport is beginning to recover from the effects of large scale protests and labor actions on Monday. The civil disobedience, including labor strikes and sit-ins related to ongoing anti-government protests, resulted in the cancellation of more than 250 flights on Monday alone.

Hong Kong International Airport (HKG) was a mess this week after hundreds of airport, airline and air traffic control workers joined a one-day strike protesting government policies. The strike coupled with sit-ins, picket lines and other protests resulted in the cancellation of at least 250 flights on Monday.

According to the South China Morning Post, long lines and crowded terminals were still in evidence on Tuesday as airlines struggled to recover from Monday’s disruptions. After flight crews, ramp workers, airport employees and even air traffic controllers backed the labor action on Monday, a full 25 percent of the airport’s daily flights were canceled outright or rescheduled for the following day. By Monday morning, airlines were warning passengers not to head to the airport without first checking to see if their flight had been rescheduled.

“Cathay Pacific and Cathay Dragon have been informed by the Airport Authority of Hong Kong that air traffic flow control measures are being implemented on 5 August 2019,” airline officials wrote in a service advisory to passengers.  “As a result, many flights have been delayed or cancelled. Customers are advised to postpone non-essential travel. We strongly advise customers not to go to the airport unless they have a confirmed booking.”

The labor action wasn’t the only strain on operations at HKG. According to the International Business Times, a number of sit-ins and picket lines blocked access to the airport and resulted in the temporary closure of one runway. In fact, passengers whose flights had not been canceled found it difficult to make it to the airport due to simultaneous public transit strikes and highways blocked by protesters.

According to local media reports, scheduled service had mostly resumed at the airport by Tuesday, with some airlines temporarily suspending employee flight benefits to help accommodate stranded customers. Rail service to and from the airport is also said to have resumed normal operations as of early Tuesday morning.


[Featured Image: Flickr/ IQRemix]

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