Paris airports fuel pipeline cut amid protests: company
The fuel pipeline to Paris' two main airports as well as depots outside the capital was cut on Friday, operator Trapil told AFP, as pension reform protests around the country hit supplies.
The main Paris air hub, Charles de Gaulle, could run out of fuel as early as next week, a company spokesman said, adding that three fuel depots supplying road filling stations south of the capital would also be hit.
Contacted by AFP, Paris' airport authority had no immediate comment.
"Orly airport has stocks for 17 days, and Roissy for at least the weekend," the Trapil official said, adding that the pipeline carried petrol, diesel and aviation fuel from the Grandpuits refinery east of Paris, which is on strike.
The CGT trade union confirmed its members, who are protesting plans to raise the retirement age from 60 to 62, had downed tools at Grandpuits and that production there would halt completely on Friday.
Separately, union leaders and management confirmed that all 12 of France's mainland refineries were either on indefinite strike or affected by temporary stoppages on Friday as the action escalates.
President Nicolas Sarkozy's government has vowed to press ahead with the pensions reform bill, and has deployed police to break-up demonstrations that had blocked several fuel depots around the country.
But most of the country's refineries have been shut down by the strikes, and fuel distributors have complained that panic buying and disrupted supplies could lead to shortages unless they are allowed to tap emergency supplies.
The government has given the firms permission to tap into their own emergency stocks, but has resisted calls to open the part of the strategic fuel controlled by a government committee.
© 2010 AFP