-Ryanair answer fuel scrimping allegations.
Travel Business Review - 20 August 2012
Michael O'Leary, the boss of Ireland-based budget carrier, Ryanair, has responded angrily to allegations that his company scrimps on air fuel.
Pilot unions and the Spanish aviation authorities made the allegations, and the carrier is being investigated in Spain after the events of one day in July when three of its aircraft bound for Madrid were all forced to make emergency landings at Valencia when a diversion due to local thunderstorms left them short of fuel. This lead to suggestions that the Spanish authorities could suspend the company's licence to operate in the country, but O'Leary became involved in a war of words with the Spanish transport minister, accusing him of telling 'half truths', and was equally scathing of pilot leaders' accusations that Ryanair compromised safety.
The Irish Airline Pilots Association (IALPA) went on record last week to accuse the company of, 'making pilots uncomfortable about taking extra fuel when they feel they need it.' Meanwhile, Evan Cullen, the president of IALPA, went still further, saying that Ryanair, 'put personal pressure on individuals [pilots].'
German pilots union Vereinigung Cockpit also backed the IALPA claims, saying the Ryanair flights had 'almost empty tanks' when they landed at Valencia. It claimed that the pressure on pilots to limit their fuel intake was a weight consideration by the company.
Speaking to Spanish newspaper, El Mundo, O'Leary said, 'I have absolutely no fears the Spanish government will withdraw our operating licence. It's issued by the Irish Aviation Authority. Neither the Spanish government nor its transport ministry have the power to do this. Ryanair acts responsibly towards its customers. If it didn't, the Irish Civil Aviation Authority would have punished us.'
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((Distributed via M2 Communications - http://www.m2.com))
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|Publication:||Travel Business Review (TBR)|
|Date:||Aug 20, 2012|
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