Sabotage concern at Brussels airport

11th March 2009, Comments 0 comments

Mistakes have been made during the servicing of a number of airplanes by Sabena Technics at Brussels Airport.

Investigators believe that the faults may have been caused on purpose.

A restructuring operation was announced at Sabena Technics in January.  371 jobs are to go.

The mistakes were discovered last Friday. Two planes are affected.

The Belgian Transport Minister, Etienne Schouppe (Flemish Christian Democrat), says that the errors cannot simply be the result of negligence or oversight.

Schouppe told VRT: "The mistakes uncovered are serious and could have had major implications."

The security services took a look at what went wrong and judged that the mistakes were of such a serious nature that the police and the public prosecutor’s office were alerted.

Schouppe added: "We want to find out what happened. We cannot exclude that somebody did this on purpose and that this is a case of criminal damage."

The Transport Minister underlined that surveillance has now been stepped up and that extra security measures have been taken.

All aircraft that have been serviced since mid January have been re-examined. No further problems were uncovered.

Staff at Sabena Technics took strike action on Tuesday. The strike is planned to last until Wednesday evening.

Link to restructuring operation?

At the end of January Sabena Technics announced that 371 jobs were being axed. The company has a workforce of 1,100.

Schouppe said: “I don't want to believe that there is a link. I believe our technicians have a great sense of responsibility and cannot image that they would take insane action as a result of the restructuring operation."

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