Turkish Airlines on Slippery Slope

Turkish Airlines has fought hard over the last few years to build a reputation as a modern, secure, international airline but there are some rather worrying gaps appearing in the carefully created PR image that no amount of sponsorship of glamorous football clubs will hide. The most recent blow is totally self-inflicted and suggests the airline has little idea or concern about how it is viewed by the rest of the world.

The Turkish parliament is debating a law to ban aviation workers from striking. This is just one of many signs of the government’s swing to totalitarianism.

The Turkish Civil Aviation Union reacted by urging members to go sick – the only method of protest available. Turkish Airlines instantly dismissed 150 staff (according to rumours, mostly engineers, cabin staff and at least one Captain).

Turkish Airlines has had one of the worst safety records of any airline in the world. That has improved but, as the accident in Amsterdam showed, they still have problems to overcome. No one likes strikes but the right to strike is a fundamental liberty in any civilised society. If airline employees are fearful of speaking out against their employer or government, safety will be the first casualty.

3 thoughts on “Turkish Airlines on Slippery Slope

  1. I recently had my first flight with Turkish Airlines, while the onboard service and meals were great, I was amazed to see that the crew did nothing to stop almost everyone on the plane standing up and starting retrieving their bags from the overhead bins…while the aircraft was still rolling on the runway and had nnot even used the brakes! the mere hint of standing up while the plane is still moving might get you a severe reprieve on most airlines, but here it seemed it was totally normal, I was a bit concerned. (By the way, something I observed something similar on Cyprus Airways too)

    • Unfortunately, this is not the first time I have heard that type of comment. It does look as if Turkish Airlines have really improved the on-board service but cabin crew can still be very “casual” about basic safety procedures. Makes you wonder if the same pattern applies the other side of the cockpit door…

    • Cannot agree more. I have been flying Turkish now twice a month long-haul for more than a year and their overall regard for safety in the cabin is shocking! I have no faith that the waiters (they cannot be called safety officers on turkish!) will have any clue what to do in the event of an accident.

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