Airline Warns Of Scab Pilots - ANSETT is warning it will bring in overseas pilots if it has to. The airline has again been forced to book its passengers on other airlines after its pilots call in sick for the fifth day in a row. Ansett is embroiled in a pay contract dispute with its pilots and those calling in sick say they are too stressed to fly. One of the arguments is the hours of work. ANSETT says it wants to increase pilot flying time from 11 hours to 15 hours a week. A company spokesperson says it needs to make changes to survive. He says ANSETT needs to be leaner and meaner. The airline has already identified Canadian pilots who will be contracted to fly here if needed.
Pilots Really Sick - Meanwhile an ANSETT captain says pilots are genuinely ill. He is upset the company is trying to force them to accept a substandard deal. He says some conditions are ridiculous. ANSETT, the captain says, wants pilots to eat their meals on their knees when flying aircraft. Pilots do not believe it is an acceptable thing to have to do. Travel agents are advising people to rethink their domestic travel plans.
Parliament in Urgency - Urgency continues in Parliament with MPs back in the house this morning. The Government wants to push through seven bills through their final stages. The Legislation includes kiwifruit industry reform which is designed to turn the kiwifruit marketing arm into a separate grower owned company. MPs will be in the House until midnight and will have to return to their electorates tomorrow.
Hospital Gears Up For APEC -
Auckland Hospital is ready for every medical emergency APEC
may throw at it, from a terrorist attack to Bill Clinton
having a heart attack. It is ready to co-ordinate with all
other emergency services such as the police, ambulance,
civil defence focussing particularly on access to the
hospital. It has even established a helpline for APEC
visitors to call if they have any medical problems. If a
visitor has anything wrong, even a stomach upset they can
ring the helpline to arrange a GP to visit their