The company that maintains and repairs Air Canada planes has filed for bankruptcy protection according to the airline.
Aveos Fleet Performance Inc. closed three of their plants in Winnipeg, Montreal and Vancouver on Sunday laying off more than 2,400 workers.
In a press release Air Canada says the events are “disappointing” but will not affect day-to-day aircraft maintenance and repair which will be done by airline’s own 2,300 maintenance employees. If Aveos is unable to conduct pre-planned maintenance checks and “airframe, engine and component work” the airline will use other service providers in the U.S. and Canada.
Aveos is a private company that was created in 2007 when Air Canada sold off its maintenance division to pay off the airline’s debts. However, Air Canada is still responsible for about 85 per cent of their revenue.
Some 200 workers laid off in Montreal are blocking access to the Air Canada head office near the Pierre Elliot Trudeau Airport. Three quarters of the workers laid off were in Montreal.
Meanwhile, Air Canada is continuing to battle labour disputes with their pilots’ union.
Several pilots called in sick over the busy March break weekend, accounting for some of the delays and flight cancellations according to the airline spokesman. Air Canada has asked the Canadian Industrial Relations Board to intervene.
Lockout and strike plans from the pilots’ union and the maintenance workers’ union were thwarted last week after the government passed back-to-work legislation.