Takeoffs Delayed by Ben Gurion Worker Slowdown

EL AL planes at Ben Gurion International Airport. Photo by Moshe Shai/FLASH90
El Al planes grounded at Ben Gurion International Airport. (Moshe Shai/Flash90)

Flights to and from Israel are likely to be delayed all day Thursday and into Friday, the Airports Authority said. Workers are conducting a “by the book” work slowdown, and are likely to continue it throughout the day.

The slowdown affects outgoing flights, with workers increasing the time between takeoffs. Presented as a “safety measure,” the slowdown is out of the reach of censure by officials as an unauthorized work action, but according to the Authority, that’s what it is. The slowdown has affected dozens of flights Thursday morning, and is likely to begin affecting incoming flights later in the day, when the flights from Europe and U.S. cluster in the mid-afternoon and evening.

Airport Authority officials said that the slowdown was another attempt by workers to force the hand of management in contract talks that are ongoing.