Skies Over France Empty As Air Traffic Controllers Begin Three-Day Strike

Tyler Durden's picture

One look at the airplane traffic map below should be enough to convey which socialist European country has a just started a 3-day air traffic controller strike.

Sure enough, as a result of the French ATC union demands for 'fairness', i.e., an elimination in the "unprecedented" cost-cutting plan, the eastern air border of France now looks like the 405 Freeway during rush hour. Watch the real time air traffic over Europe here.

From the NYT:

The crowds in the airport terminals serving the French capital were visibly thinner than usual for a weekday morning, airport officials said Tuesday, as air traffic controllers here began a three-day strike to protest European Union plans to accelerate the integration of the region’s fragmented air space.


As of 10 a.m., approximately 40 percent of flights had been canceled at the Charles de Gaulle airport in Roissy, north of Paris, said a spokeswoman for the airport operator, Aéroports de Paris.


“For the moment, the situation is calm, but there are likely to be more delays as the day progresses,” said the spokeswoman, who asked not to be named in accordance with airport policy. “Most passengers appear to have been given sufficient warning in advance and have not come to the airport.”


A majority of intercontinental flights departing from Charles de Gaulle appeared to be operating, she said, with cancellations and delays mainly affecting short-haul flights within Europe. At Orly Airport, which lies to the south of Paris and serves mainly French and European destinations, roughly half of all flights have been canceled.


France’s largest regional airports, Lyon, Nice, Marseille Toulouse and Bordeaux, reported flight cancellation rates of 30 percent to 40 percent.


Other flights that normally pass over French airspace were also expected to face some delays because of rerouting.


The main air traffic controllers’ union in France announced plans to strike late last week to protest what it called the Union’s “unprecedented cost-cutting plan,” which it warned would sap need resources at a time when it says France should be investing to upgrade its air traffic management systems.


Controllers in about a half-dozen other European countries, including Hungary, Portugal and Slovakia, were expected to join in with more symbolic protests on Wednesday, union leaders said, though these actions were expected to last no more than 24 hours and were unlikely to cause serious disruptions.


The Union has sought for more than a decade to unify a patchwork of national air traffic control systems — part of a master plan known as the Single European Sky. The aim is to streamline a system that officials say adds about 5 billion euros, or $7.3 billion, in unnecessary costs each year and contributes to millions of tons of wasted fuel and added carbon emissions.

h/t @planefinder

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orangegeek's picture

Thanks for coming out France.

Almost Solvent's picture

I picked the wrong day to quit drinking while sniffing glue . . .

Popo's picture

Time to pull a Reagan.  Fire their asses and replace them with military ATC.  Then let them re-apply one by one for the same jobs at lower salaries.   If they don't want the jobs they can work somewhere else.

Kirk2NCC1701's picture

Clearly you do not believe in Democracy, i.e., in ppl having the right to join forced in a common cause.

In your book, by the looks of it, this 'privilege' is reserved for the ruling Elite. Lest their busy schedules and agendas get inconvenienced too much.

Dumpster Fire's picture

It's about balance and leverage.  I mean you do agree that they should have the right fire striking workers, no?

Agent P's picture

The French have no such move in their playbook. 

Homernomics's picture

As usual, Germany picking up the slack from the French.


"Why do the French have so many tree-lined streets?  So the Germans can march in the shade.

Analyse2's picture


This kind of stale joke stinks like an old hate



francis_sawyer's picture

The original plan was for the Zionists to fly airplanes into the Grande Arche building here [in Paris]


But something went wrong & they had to go to plan B

Political_Savage's picture

Francis - they are "cheesepopes", not Zionists.

You'll get scolded.



How did you ever come up with the name CheesePopes? It's meaning is still somewhat lost on me.

francis_sawyer's picture

I've disclosed this before...


The 'cheesepopes' were the name of a mixed league softball team in Charlottesville, VA [circa early 1980's]...

The term means NOTHING otherwise [which is quite curious as to why it draws so many junks] ;-)

I'm doing my post-doctorate work right now to see if the young lads & ladies who were on that mixed league softball team all happened to be descendents of Ghengis Khan...

frankthomaswhite59's picture

thanks,  I've been curious too


francis_sawyer's picture

It proves that the "Pre-Crime" Unit is already in operation...

malikai's picture

I hear smoking glue is even better.

For a good laugh check out Europe's ATC fee structure. Which by the way is supposed to pay for controllers, but somehow is never enough.

Rustysilver's picture

Cheaper aviation fuel. Yeah

Element's picture

What I was thinking, Jet A1's about $2.80 AUD a liter here, and a lot more for remote area airdromes.

Schmuck Raker's picture

I bet the Saudis are still flying.

Frastric's picture

A perfect opportunity to hijack planes with box cutters or whatever shit the US government fed to the MSM over how the 'hijackers' 'hijacked' a plane.

Could also be a good time for a Saudi to fake his death, just throw in an indestructible passport that will survive a collapse of a building falling into its footprint (and don't forget the thermate as well) and yeah...

yogibear's picture

One way to put France further in the hole. Strikes worked well in Greece (sarc).

Looks like France is joining the destroy the EU gang.

Azannoth's picture

To paraphrase Lenin "The Communists will strike their own system down, which the capitalists will than buy at pennies on the dollar"

youngman's picture

They can always sell their wine to China.......ooops

ziggy59's picture

Hunt For Red June....
Good luck!

Racer's picture

With all that congestion I wouldn't fancy flying today!

Dr. Engali's picture

The poor poor security thugs, it will be rough on them not being able to cop a free feel for the next three days.

Kirk2NCC1701's picture

Indeed. And just like DC and NY lawyers on a cold winter day, they'll have to keep their hands in their own pockets. ;-)

Racer's picture

LOL if you look at it with world view it looks like the globe is covered in spiders!

orangegeek's picture

Dow opened down 150 - now sitting at down 80 - TURBO TUESDAY......air traffic controller strike that cripples global travel??  FUCKING BULLISH BABY!!!!!

alangreedspank's picture

Sacrebleu, they are le fucked.

Son of Loki's picture

There's only one airline worse the Air France and it's Air Zimbabwe.

ross81's picture

the Air Zim hostesses are much friendlier though, even though one may have minor concerns about a wing falling off or something.

Smuckers's picture

Thank god, I hate watching that French dork family pre-takeoff video putting their seatbelts on.

smacker's picture

Possibly the most popular aircraft tracking website:

There's also a smartphone app available.

greatbeard's picture

Crush the unions!!! Long live the Banksters!!!!

Kirk2NCC1701's picture

And yet flights between Ireland and Portugal (the PI part of the EU 'PIIGS') are as busy as ever. The Life of PI continues.

markar's picture

This is bullish for the French economy, right?

Aurora Ex Machina's picture

Sometimes I wish programmers watched a little more Monty Python.


Every so often you'd see a grey outline of a plane, and wonder if it was just a ghost in the machine or a rendition flight.

NuYawkFrankie's picture

Hope the Griswolds haven't been too inconvenienced...


Clark had mentioned something about picking up an amphibious Winnebago - as soon as they'd done Stonehenge - and motor-boating that sucker right over to Le Frogland.

Bansters-in-my- feces's picture


So that means only the military jets will be in the sky dumping their loads of barium and other goodies that are good for your health .

The jets in the sky will be the ones doing their Solar Radiation Management.

And their Stratospheric Aerosol Geoengineering.

"Own the Weather in 2025"

Thats the militarys (USA) motto.


..............STOP CHEMTRAIL SPRAYING......................!!!

Lady Heather...UNCLE's picture

The the word 'clusterfuck' become a euphemism for 'day to day'

Joebloinvestor's picture

Hollande will fix this too.

AbbeBrel's picture

He better "démerder" this situation or he will be in the deep doodoo too.

Flagit's picture

so is THIS why my flight jumped $800 in a matter of minutes while trying to book on expedia? dont really see how.

WTFUD's picture

There are more french sorties over west africa than france today tomorrow and next. All hail Hollande!

RaceToTheBottom's picture

Oh great, now the train operators are having to pick up the slack.,....  I am assuming that they are striking next week because of increased work load.

q99x2's picture

Break out the Mish Shedlock and Ronald Raegan Flags.

Atticus Finch's picture

"...master plan known as the Single European Sky. The aim is to streamline a system that officials say adds about 5 billion euros, or $7.3 billion, in unnecessary costs each year and contributes to millions of tons of wasted fuel and added carbon emissions."

Nice cover story like all one-world cover stories. This is about control gentlemen, and I'm not talking about air traffic control. Consolidation of power is the real agenda and nothing else. This has nothing to do with Hollande, the convenient scape goat.