SAS to Cancel 300 European, Domestic Flights Due to Strike Threat

STOCKHOLM, Sweden_Scandinavian airlines SAS said its unit in Sweden would cancel some 300 flights on European and domestic routes Friday because of a planned strike by cabin staff.

Last week, the Swedish Salaried Employees' Union threatened to call the strike for 800 of its members unless agreement was reached in talks on working conditions.

SAS Sweden, part of SAS AB, said Thursday it decided to cancel the flights before the possible strike to avoid passengers being stranded. Intercontinental flights will not be affected, it said, and neither will connections between Stockholm and London City airport, which are staffed by Transwede employees.

SAS Sweden Chief Executive Anders Ehrling said negotiations with the union would continue, but had been fruitless so far. The company was to decide Friday on possible further cancellations.

The union, which has a total of 160,000 members, is demanding better working conditions for its staff in Sweden.

SAS said the cancellations would cost it some 20 million kronor (€2.2 million; US$3 million) a day in lost tickets.