Strikes across Belgium on Monday

Strikes across Belgium on Monday

15th December 2014, Comments 0 comments

Belgium's three main unions have called a general strike for Monday 15 December. It is the culmination of a series of protests against austerity packages introduced by several Belgian governments.

Roads

Police in the Belgian and Flemish capital have issued a warning in connection with Monday's rush hour in Brussels that is expected to be more horrendous than usual. Many commuters could take a day-off to avoid the disruption.

Police urge motorists to set out on their journeys a lot earlier than usual, to share vehicles and to avoid Brussels on Monday if at all possible.

Disruption is also anticipated on the motorways into the capital as strikers are planning to blockade intersections in the approach to downtown Brussels.

Trains, trams and buses

The Belgian rail company says it's quite possible that there won't be a single train running on Monday.

All high speed rail services in Belgium have been cancelled on Monday.

Thalys and ICE services have been abandoned while Eurostar and TGV services will run no further than Lille in the north of France.

The Flemish local transport company De Lijn believes no buses or trams will run in Flanders.

The Brussels local transport company MIVB expects severe disruption on its network as does the TEC in Wallonia.

Air travel

Belgium's air traffic controllers are staging a 24-hour stoppage.

This should shut down air traffic in Belgium with the airports of Brussels, Charleroi, Antwerp and Ostend all closed. Many airlines have cancelled flights including Belgian air carrier Brussels Airlines.

In all some 600 flights have been cancelled at Brussels Airport.

The unions expect most of the staff at the baggage handling service to walk out too.

Brucargo, Brussels' freight airport, will be picketed preventing freight transports.

Ports

A shut down is also expected at the ports of Antwerp, Zeebrugge and Ghent.

Dockers are walking out en masse.

Loading and unloading of freight will not be possible.

After the violence that erupted during the demonstration in Brussels on 6 November all eyes will be on the port of Antwerp to see whether or not it remains peaceful.

 

Flandersnews.be / Expatica

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