Category: Aviation

E tū calls for national memorial ahead of Erebus anniversary

New Zealand’s largest aviation union, E tū is supporting calls by the Erebus families for a national memorial to New Zealand’s biggest aviation disaster.

In 1979, an Air New Zealand scenic flight over Antarctica crashed into Mt Erebus killing all 257 people on board including 20 crew.

Today, E tū aviation representatives will attend the annual wreath-laying at the Erebus Crew Memorial garden at Auckland Airport.

E tū’s Head of Aviation Anita Rosentreter says the memorial remembers the crew who died but there is none with the names of all the victims, which is what the families want.

“We support the families. It’s important we honour the memory of all who died in New Zealand’s worst air disaster,” says Anita.

“This would be a place where the families could reflect on what happened and it would serve as a powerful reminder of the need for vigilance where safety is concerned.”

Anita says a recent incident in which a clipboard was left on the cowling of a Jetstar engine and sucked into the engine during a flight shows there is no room for complacency.

“That incident could have been so much worse. Aviation workers know what they do matters every day in terms of preserving the safety of the public and their colleagues.

“Just as we honour the memory of the men who died at Pike River, so we should remember the people who died in the Erebus tragedy as well.”

What: wreath-laying at the Erebus Crew Memorial garden

Where:  Puhinui Rd at Auckland Airport – the memorial is located to the side of the Tom Pearce Drive

When: 28th November 10.30am

ENDS

For further information, contact:

Anita Rosentreter E tū Aviation Director ph. 022 240 9638

 

 

E tū challenges Aerocare over standards after Jetstar clip-board incident

E tū Aviation is challenging the aviation ground crew company, Aerocare to reveal its training regime and working conditions after a clip-board was sucked into the engine of a Jetstar plane serviced by the company.

The clip-board had been left on the cowling of the plane in Auckland.  The plane headed to Sydney but returned to Auckland after debris was seen coming from one of its engines.

The Head of E tū Aviation, Kelvin Ellis says the union is “shocked and concerned to hear about this incident which is unacceptable and should never have happened.

“It doesn’t happen with an airline with proper systems,” says Kelvin who says Aerocare needs to justify its training standards and working conditions.

“We wonder what training Aerocare is providing for its workers, because a clip-board should never have been left near a jet engine. It’s just an unfathomable incident.”

Kelvin says there is also concern about labour practices like split-shifts “which end up being really long shifts because they might work 2-hours at the start of the day and 2 hours at the end of the day. They’re poorly paid and fatigue may be an issue.”

Kelvin says the union would welcome a conversation with Aerocare about improving its training and setting working conditions which are fair and safe for the workers and the travelling public.

ENDS

For more information, contact:

Kelvin Ellis E tū Head of Aviation ph. 027 598 5735

E tū Aviation welcomes new Government’s rejection of low wage economy

E tū Aviation has welcomed the new Prime Minister’s call for productive relationships between business and workers, and an end to low pay and its negative economic effects.

In her speech to the Council of Trade Unions yesterday, Jacinda Ardern praised the High-Performance Engagement agreement which E tū and other unions have with Air New Zealand.

“That agreement means business and unions sit down together and help each other with their problems and the results speak for themselves,” says E tū’s Head of Aviation, Kelvin Ellis.

“Working together has saved jobs, ensured good pay and conditions and helped transform Air New Zealand into one of the world’s most successful and profitable airlines.

“The new Government has clearly drawn the lesson that working together benefits all parties, and we’re delighted with its support for this model.”

Kelvin has also welcomed Ms Ardern’s rejection of the low-wage approach of many employers which actually erodes productivity.

“Ms Ardern has correctly made the link between an engaged, well-paid workforce and Air New Zealand’s strong financial position.

“We fully support her message on this: that low wages aren’t simply a problem for low-wage workers, they are a problem for businesses and the economy as a whole.”

ENDS

For further information, contact:

Kelvin Ellis Head of E tū Aviation ph. 027 598 5735

 

 

 

E tū welcomes Emirates’ exit from most trans-Tasman services

E tū, the union for aviation workers has welcomed today’s announcement by Emirates that it is dropping flights out of Auckland to Melbourne and Brisbane.

The announcement follows Emirates decision earlier this year to cease its service between Auckland and Sydney.

E tū’s Head of Aviation, Kelvin Ellis says he expects local cabin crew to benefit as other airlines expand their trans-Tasman capacity.

“Emirates doesn’t employ local cabin crew. It flies its staff in and out of New Zealand. So, we expect this should provide greater opportunities for New Zealand-based cabin crew,” says Kelvin.

“We’re hopeful that as Air New Zealand and Qantas subsidiary, Jet Connect expand their trans-Tasman operations, the result will be more work for cabin crew based in Auckland.

“So, this should be good for jobs,” he says.

ENDS

For more information, contact:

Kelvin Ellis E tū Head of Aviation ph. 027 598 5735

Government and Refining NZ to blame for “chaos” at airports

E tū Aviation says it’s appalled the Government and Refining New Zealand have no plan B for disruption to the crucial fuel line between Marsden Point and the rest of the country.

“The result has been days of disruption, with flights cancelled and the plans of thousands of travellers thrown into chaos,” says E tū Aviation spokesperson Kelvin Ellis.

Kelvin says airlines have been dealing with the situation “brilliantly” with strong support for its workforce who are bearing the brunt of abuse from a frustrated public.

“Airlines have plans for this sort of event and they’re doing well looking after their workers.”

But he says the situation has exposed the vulnerability of the country’s sole aviation fuel link.

“It’s incredible neither the Government nor Refining New Zealand have a back-up plan. This is vital infrastructure in a country which depends on tourism, and where people travel constantly.

“To have allowed a situation like this to develop is appalling. The Government can pass the buck onto Refining New Zealand, and shrug off responsibility. But the vulnerability of that line was flagged years ago. There should have been contingency plans.

“It’s just further evidence of the failure of the Government’s “hands-off” approach to key infrastructure which has allowed this situation to happen.”

Meanwhile, Kelvin is appealing for the public to be patient with airlines and their staff as they work to manage a crisis “not of their making”.

ENDS

For more information, contact:

Kelvin Ellis E tū Aviation spokesperson ph. 027 598 5735