SAS demands half a billion kronor compensation

Airline company SAS is demanding half a billion kronor ($75 million) in compensation from plane manufacturer Bombardier following a spate of recent incidents involving the Canadian firm's Dash planes.

SAS demands half a billion kronor compensation
Photo: Javier Pedreira

According to SAS, recent problems with the aircraft have cost the airline 10 to 15 million kronor per day and led to a drop in productivity worth 300 million kronor.

Speaking at a press conference in Copenhagen, CEO Mats Jansson said that SAS had also been damaged by having its flight security called into question.

Two near accidents involving Dash 8-Q400 planes – in Aalborg on September 9th and in Vilnius three days later – led to SAS grounding its entire fleet of Dash aircraft. SAS has subsequently carried out rigorous checks on its fleet, replacing damaged parts on a number of planes.

On Thursday many of the Dash planes will begin flying again, although SAS estimates that it will take ten to twelve days before all planes are deemed airworthy.

Pending the resumption of full service, SAS has announced the cancellation of a number of departures from Kastrup airport in Copenhagen, with 63 flights affected on Thursday and 47 on Friday.


‘We agree to disagree’: Still no progress in marathon SAS strike talks

By lunchtime on Friday, talks between the Scandinavian airline SAS and unions representing striking pilots were still stuck on "difficult issues".

'We agree to disagree': Still no progress in marathon SAS strike talks

“We agree that we disagree,” Roger Klokset, from the Norwegian pilots’ union, said at lunchtime outside the headquarters of the Confederation of Swedish Enterprise in Stockholm, where talks are taking place. “We are still working to find a solution, and so long as there is still some point in continuing negotiations, we will do that.” 

Mats Ruland, a mediator for the Norwegian government, said that there were “still several difficult issues which need to be solved”. 

At 1pm on Friday, the two sides took a short break from the talks for lunch, after starting at 9am. On Thursday, they negotiated for 15 hours, breaking off at 1am on Friday morning. 

READ ALSO: What’s the latest on the SAS plane strike?

Marianne Hernæs, SAS’s negotiator on Friday told journalists she was tired after sitting at the negotiating table long into the night. 

“We need to find a model where we can meet in the middle and which can ensure that we pull in the income that we are dependent on,” she said. 

Klokset said that there was “a good atmosphere” in the talks, and that the unions were sticking together to represent their members.

“I think we’ve been extremely flexible so far. It’s ‘out of this world’,’ said Henrik Thyregod, with the Danish pilots’ union. 

“This could have been solved back in December if SAS had not made unreasonable demands on the pilots,” Klokset added. 

The strike, which is now in its 12th day, has cost SAS up to 130m kronor a day, with 2,550 flights cancelled by Thursday, affecting 270,000 passengers.