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Heathrow flights could be disrupted by refuellers strike

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Flights from London Heathrow airport could be affected by a planned strike by aircraft refuelling workers in May.

Members of the Unite union who work for aviation fuel firm AFS are set to walk out for 72 hours on 4 May in a dispute over the terms and conditions for staff who have recently joined the company.

AFS supplies fuel to 35 airlines at Heathrow, including Virgin Atlantic, Loganair, Delta, KLM, Air France, SAS and Singapore Airlines, with Unite warning that the strike would lead to “severe disruption” to flights.

Unite’s general secretary Sharon Graham said: “AFS is behaving appallingly by attacking the terms and conditions of new members of staff – those it views as the easiest to intimidate.

“But Unite will not stand for such bully-boy tactics and we will be backing our members in their fight for improved pensions and sick pay for all staff.”

AFS is a joint venture between several fuel companies including Air BP, Total, Q8 Air and Valero.

Heathrow said it was working with AFS to “support their robust contingency plans for the airlines they provide fuel to”.

“AFS are one of a number of suppliers at the airport and the majority of flights are supported by other providers. Passengers can continue to travel with confidence at Heathrow,” added the airport in a statement.

BTN Europe has also contacted AFS for comment.

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