MEP backs call for airline blacklist

10 August 2005
Scottish National Party MEP Alyn Smith has supported a call from the European Parliament's Transport Committee for a Europe wide blacklist of air carriers.

The blacklist idea has already been supported by France and Belgium who have published their own lists but Mr Smith believes a common EU list would be more effective. The move comes after a series of airline crashes this summer.

Speaking from Brussels Mr Smith said

"We need to ensure that air travel is as safe as possible for all passengers. We use planes to travel between countries, so it is vital that all countries can agree on which airlines are safe.

"We are all supposed to be using the same standards of safety so why are some airlines alright to fly into one country but not another? Some countries publish their lists but some do not. The EU could make a real difference to confidence in air safety by providing a framework for publication of each of the 25 different national assessments.

"It shouldn't create any extra work as all countries have these lists, they just need to agree on the criteria, and a common list could be made available to passengers at travel agencies, airports and on line so no one need worry about the safety of their flights.

"As an MEP I am backing the move whole heartedly and the Parliament will be pushing the Commission to introduce the blacklist as part of wider proposals on air passenger safety. I sincerely hope that in the interests of passenger safety the London government and other member states will come on board."