Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) has increased the duty time of its cabin crew by four hours.
The airline management has increased the duty time as an austerity measure to cut down on additional costs.
“Management has decided to revise basic Flight Duty Time Limitation (FDTL) of cabin crew from 12 hours to 16 hours including 2 hours briefing and debriefing time, as a cost-cutting measure and in order to effectively utilize available cabin crew, with immediate effect,” the admin order stated.
Pakistan Airlines Cabin Crew Association (PACCA) has declared that the order is against the safety of passengers.
PIA Chief Human Resource Officer, AVM Soban Nazir Syed, with the approval of President and CEO of the airline, issued an Admin order for the revision of flight duty time limitation for the cabin crew.
Implementation has already been started and the management announced that additional incentives and special allowances to the cabin crew would be made on the basis of the revised duty time.
A source in PIA flight operations told ProPakistani that with this decision, the airline will save millions of rupees just by increasing cabin crew duty time. With the implementation of the new FDTL, the cabin crew will make two-way trips without any stay at Jeddah, Medina, Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur routes.
“New FDTL allows PIA to operate with less crew not only saving in salary and allowances but also with regards to the expensive hotel stay in foreign countries,” the source informed.
PACCA has rejected the revision of FDTL and announced to challenge it legally. President PACCA, Nasarullah Afridi, has sent a letter to the airline General Manager Flight Services.
In this letter, Nasrullah claimed that the increase in cabin crew duty time is a violation of Air Navigation Order (ANO) and Safety Equipment & Procedure Manual (SPE). This could be a safety hazard for the PIA passengers.
“Cabin crew’s basic job is the safety of passengers on board while their comfort is a secondary job. Restless and fatigued crew will not be able to perform their duty and will not be able to effectively handle any safety situations” Afridi told.