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Wizz Air Crew Forced to Resign

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Wizz Air Crew Forced to Resign

Old 15th Aug 2022, 09:53
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Wizz Air Crew Forced to Resign

According to the union FPU Romania a Wizz Air cabin crew member was reprimanded and forced to resign by the base manager for refusing to extend a flight duty period (FDP) under Commanders’ discretion on August 1st, 2022, at Beauvais (BVA) airport. Is this not a criminal act and breach of EU Ops?


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Old 15th Aug 2022, 10:16
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Many cabin crew appear to be under the impression that it is their discretion. I was once told by a male CC that there was "no way" he was going to use his discretion. I left him in Muscat and he was later sacked too.
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Old 15th Aug 2022, 10:22
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Originally Posted by Gordomac View Post
Many cabin crew appear to be under the impression that it is their discretion. I was once told by a male CC that there was "no way" he was going to use his discretion. I left him in Muscat and he was later sacked too.
Absolutely true, and I have done the same. However there is a requirement for the commander to take into account the state of the of and cabin crew before he agrees to operate. However the use of discretion to cover illegally planned FDPs is another issue entirely and that is now common.
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Old 15th Aug 2022, 11:47
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Originally Posted by Gordomac View Post
Many cabin crew appear to be under the impression that it is their discretion. I was once told by a male CC that there was "no way" he was going to use his discretion. I left him in Muscat and he was later sacked too.
What you say is quite correct. Most OMA's include words to the effect 'No crew member shall operate a flight when he believes himself to be unfit or when he believes he may become unfit during the flight.' If any crew member reports as such to the commander (in this case, citing fatigue) then it is a very brave commander who overrules the OMA.

The crew member should, imho, be stood down (positioned back or offloaded as is most appropriate) and if this grounds the flight then the operator needs to look at its rostering practices. Looking at who the operator is in this case, I would assume minimum crew and no standby cover but that is an operator issue not a crew issue.
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Old 15th Aug 2022, 13:38
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Originally Posted by Youmightsaythat View Post
Is this not a criminal act and breach of EU Ops?
If "criminal" or not a court will have to decide. But "sacking" a crew member because she or he does not accept a commanders discretion to extend the flight duty times is a clear violation of EASA rulemaking. First because it is her or his right and duty (!) not to continue a flight beyond duty time limits if fatigued. And secondly because doing so does not constitute a valid reason for an employer to terminate a work contract.

These are the relevant sentences from AMC1 ORO.FTL.205(f) Flight Duty Period (FDP) (my highlights):
(3) The commander shall consult all crew members on their alertness levels before deciding the modifications under subparagraphs 1 and 2.
Which means that if a crewmember does not feel fit to continue working an exteded duty she or he either needs to be replaced (if required to operate the flight) or the flight can not take place.
(6) The operator shall implement a non-punitive process for the use of the discretion described under this provision and shall describe it in the operations manual.
Which means that nobody shall be punished in any way for deciding the way she or he does.

I am not a lawperson and EASA regulations can be difficult to understand at times, but in this case the union should have easy play to get the crewmember reinstated.
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Old 15th Aug 2022, 13:48
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Is Wizz air unionised ? I wouldn't have thought so.
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Old 15th Aug 2022, 13:58
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In what state was the allegedly sacked CCs contract founded?
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Old 15th Aug 2022, 14:01
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(3) The commander shall consult all crew members on their alertness levels before deciding the modifications under subparagraphs 1 and 2.
Which means that if a crewmember does not feel fit to continue working an extended duty she or he either needs to be replaced (if required to operate the flight) or the flight can not take place.
Depends on how the word 'consult' is used here - you can consult somebody without acting on what they say.
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Old 15th Aug 2022, 14:22
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EASA should ground Wizzair immediately. This is just the tip of the iceberg.
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Old 15th Aug 2022, 15:13
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Originally Posted by Dave Gittins View Post
Is Wizz air unionised ? I wouldn't have thought so.
The original post refers to "union FPU Romania". But one does not need a union in order to fight such a move. Even the most inexperienced laywer should be able to win that case. If someone declares himself "unfit for duty" he can neither be forced to continue working nor made redundant because of that. Not in any EU country at least.
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Old 15th Aug 2022, 16:17
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Sounds a bit iffy.
The only flight this could refer to is the LCA-BVA-LCA one. It arrived in BVA from LCA on August 1st, at 22:25LT, and departed August 3rd (!) at 11:00LT. All other flights departed within an hour of their arrival, most in the am.
The aircraft flying that rotation, just before the LCA-BVA flight, had to return to stand in ATH on the previous ATH-LCA leg.

While the LCA-BVA flight probably would have needed an extension by discretion, I cannot see a reason why the flight would depart 2 days later. Combined with the earlier return to stand in Athens, this sounds more like a recurring maintenance issue, and with probably no local MX available at BVA, fixing the problem took some time.
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Old 15th Aug 2022, 16:23
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Originally Posted by what next View Post
The original post refers to "union FPU Romania". But one does not need a union in order to fight such a move. Even the most inexperienced laywer should be able to win that case. If someone declares himself "unfit for duty" he can neither be forced to continue working nor made redundant because of that. Not in any EU country at least.
But in my case, when suspended, The CAA were informed. I was told they would not get involved as it was an 'employment matter'. BALPA refused to support the case, informing me I was unlikely to win against a multinational airline at trial. I had to represent myself. Do not be surprised if over the next few months the union and CAA become 'quite vocal' about fatigue and FDP falsification. Now I wonder why that will be?
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Old 15th Aug 2022, 16:45
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I broke the rules three times..the first ex home base when there wasn’t enough staff to load the containers. The captain was a waste of space and we all went over the max legal duty time without being asked.
The second was a planned illegal operation back from Tokyo which the captain who was a big management guy knew about before we left base but didn’t inform us.
The third was four simulator sessions in two days with 6 hours off between the pairs which I agreed under duress and got branded a trouble maker.
In my first lot they planned a night Malta or Nicosia from standby which could only be operated under the standby irregularities rule..it soon stopped as my captain went sick and a danair comet or 727 was brought in.
A friend went crew fatigue on the 1-11 during winter operations in CPH IIRC..he was brought into the office in an attempt to concoct a story to dismiss the captain. Unfortunately for the loud mouth manager who slagged said captain off in front of a BALPA rep he was reported and taken to court for slander which he lost..kept his management job though.
As to the authorities doing anything..pull the other one.
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Old 15th Aug 2022, 17:57
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Were the Skiathos guys?
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Old 15th Aug 2022, 18:27
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Originally Posted by Gordomac View Post
Many cabin crew appear to be under the impression that it is their discretion. I was once told by a male CC that there was "no way" he was going to use his discretion. I left him in Muscat and he was later sacked too.
What’s your point, you wouldn’t have forced the crew member to operate when they felt fatigued if they were female?
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Old 15th Aug 2022, 18:53
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My future wife (21) was bullied on a Trident going to Belfast when the IRA were bombing our aircraft and bars had to be specially security checked, sealed and the seal numbers HAD to match which they didn’t. Having had her assaulted by a well known drunk I had told her don’t take any more crap.
She walked off the aircraft whilst the rest of the crew, too frightened to stand up to the captain, remained..
Below minimum crew compliment the bars had to be off loaded and she went.
The security files from that era are still sealed.
‘I remember being told not to say please or thank you because cabin staff are here to serve us…happy days
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Old 15th Aug 2022, 19:40
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Originally Posted by blind pew View Post
My future wife (21) was bullied on a Trident going to Belfast when the IRA were bombing our aircraft and bars had to be specially security checked, sealed and the seal numbers HAD to match which they didn’t. Having had her assaulted by a well known drunk I had told her don’t take any more crap.
She walked off the aircraft whilst the rest of the crew, too frightened to stand up to the captain, remained..
Below minimum crew compliment the bars had to be off loaded and she went.
The security files from that era are still sealed.
‘I remember being told not to say please or thank you because cabin staff are here to serve us…happy days
I saw it all the time. Crew not getting paid but boll£ed for the wrong colour hair bobble, scared stiff they would not be asked back the following summer if they stood up for themselves. They all went that 'extra mile' yet were treated appallingly. But at the end of the day you have to stand your ground or you will be trampled. My experience is, when you forcefully do stand your ground they have no idea how to handle it. Shame more don't. The pilots and cabin crew now has the management, union and regulator they deserve,
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Old 15th Aug 2022, 20:51
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Sounds all too familiar. I too was summarily sacked for doing precicely what our (immediately Ex RAF Gp. Capt. with no civvy experience.) had instructed us to do in the event of a shortfall in legal paperwork - Sacked if you did. Sacked if you didn't. Sacking occurred one on one in a pub garden - so it was totally unattributable to the company. That man was an utter disgrace to his uniform(s).
BALPA, of course, were as useful as a chocolate teapot.

There are some utter sh!ts in this industry, far too many of them but in the event might is right.
If the little guy comes up against the might of the Company then he's toast, even in "law abiding" UK. Best get that idea straight, justice is rare in such cases.

At the end of the day it proved an excellent move as I left one incompetently run cowboy outfit and joined another far worse...but got a useful type-rating out of it that proved its worth on the next move.

It's a jungle out there!
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Old 15th Aug 2022, 21:22
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Originally Posted by meleagertoo View Post
If the little guy comes up against the might of the Company then he's toast, even in "law abiding" UK.
Well thats what BALPA,CAA, Directors and Chief pilot thought. The Judge at trial thought otherwise, but according to the airline the Judge 'didn't understand'. The whole point is, the law WILL protect you. You just have to have the balls to use it.
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Old 15th Aug 2022, 21:58
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Originally Posted by JanetFlight View Post
Were the Skiathos guys?
Wish there was a Like Button for that one.
BALPA's been pissing in the wind for years on this stuff. Now it's Open Season post Covid.
How the hell do we get back from this?
Answers on a bloody Postcard.
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