Ryanair today (12th August) dismissed inaccurate reports in a number of UK papers, including the Financial Times and the Daily Telegraph, which made references to a “survey of Ryanair pilots” and comments attributed to an Evert Van Zwol, the self styled Chairman of the Ryanair Pilot Group’s Interim Council.
Ryanair pointed out the Ryanair Pilot Group is in fact a Non Ryanair Pilot Group (NRPG), as it is a PR front for the European Cockpit Association, which is the group representing pilot trade unions of Ryanair’s competitor airlines.
Ryanair also pointed out that the self proclaimed Chairman of this Non Ryanair Group “Interim Council”, Evert Van Zwol, is in fact a serving KLM pilot and recent President of the Dutch Pilot Union. Ryanair finds it strange that the Financial Times and others attribute quotes about Ryanair’s safety to this individual without pointing out (in the interest of balance and accuracy) that he is not a Ryanair pilot, but is rather a KLM pilot and the recent President of the Dutch Pilot Trade Union.
Ryanair pointed out that this so called pilot survey was in fact fabricated by the European Cockpit Association (ECA) which is the pilot trade union club for Ryanair’s competitor airlines. Another member of the NRPG Interim Council is a Ted Murphy, a lifelong Aer Lingus pilot, former Chairman of the Aer Lingus pilots union IALPA, and a two term President of IFALPA, the international pilots union.
Ryanair’s Robin Kiely said:
“The Non Ryanair Pilot Group (NRPG )is quite clearly a PR front for pilot trade unions of Ryanair’s competitor airlines. A so called “survey” fabricated by these ECA pilot unions, which does not have access to or contact with the entire 3,000 plus pilots employed by Ryanair, lacks any independence, objectivity or reliability. It is another failed attempt by ECA pilot unions to use non-existent safety “concerns” to advance their 25 year failed campaign to win union recognition in Ryanair.
“Both Ryanair and the Irish Aviation Authority operate confidential safety reporting systems which allow any Ryanair pilot with any legitimate safety concerns to report these in complete confidentiality – without any fear of reprisal – either through Ryanair’s confidential system or the IAA’s independent and confidential system.
Ryanair’s outstanding 29 year safety record is a matter of rigorous oversight and fact based evidence. It is not something that can be voted on or subjected to anonymous or fabricated trade union surveys. It has been rigorously regulated and independently verified by the Irish Aviation Authority, operating to the highest EU safety requirements – and the IAA have recently confirmed that “Ryanair’s safety is on a par with the safest airlines in Europe”.