The problem with new Qantas route

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THERE was great excitement over Qantas’s direct flights to the UK. But now the airline is accused of trying to silence a big issue.

THERE was great excitement when Qantas launched its new ultra-long-haul flight route between Australia and the UK earlier this year.The history-making maiden 787 Dreamliner flight took off from Perth on March 24 to much applause. A whopping 17 hours and 20 minutes later, it touched down in London.

The new route — which is the world’s second-longest — was touted as a game-changer for the Australian tourism industry. But at 14,498 kilometres, there’s no doubt it’s gruelling.And now, safety concerns have been raised over the extreme non-stop flights.

The airline has come under fire from Britain’s largest union, Unite, which alleges it has tried to “silence” crew concerns over fatigue on the route.

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