Strike action could force Northwest Airlines to liquidate, executive says
NEW YORK – A Northwest Airlines labor executive said in a bankruptcy hearing on Wednesday that strike actions by its flight attendants could cripple it to the point of shutting down.A judge was hearing arguments on a motion by the company to bar flight attendants from striking. The company’s 8,000 flight attendants had said they would begin random, unannounced work stoppages starting at 10:01 p.m. EDT on Aug. 15 to protest terms of a contract imposed on them that calls for $195 million in concessions. The company feared a systemwide strike.Northwest Airlines Corp. Vice President Julie Hagen Showers said flight attendants striking, even intermittently, would put the airline in danger.”It would clearly put us on the brink of collapse and in danger of liquidation,” she said. “If we lost 20 percent of our traffic, we could not sustain ourselves. If we simply allowed it to happen, the company would liquidate.”The hearing continued Wednesday afternoon. It was unclear when the judge would rule on the motion.A strike would affect 130,000 passengers on 1,200 flights a day, the company said in court.
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