Another hotspot was Palma airport.

The Balearic Government claimed it was like a Saturday, the unions claimed victory while the tourist industry was left fearing the worst. One thing for sure yesterday the general strike disrupted the Balearics but fears that the islands would be brought to a standstill proved to be unfounded. There were some flight delays and some tourists rang the Bulletin to express their horror. “If you walk around Palma you will see that everything is functioning just like a Saturday or on a public holiday. The minimum services agreed with the unions are being respected, Palma airport is functioning almost normally and there are no major incidents,” said a Balearic government spokesman. The most ugly scenes of the day were caused by pickets, especially in the tourist resorts who were attempting to close down hotels. A 1'000 person strong picket toured the municipality watched by a large number of police officers, trying to get working hotel staff to down tools. They were shouts of abuse some intermidation by the pickets but overall most hotels were functioning thanks to a skeleton staff. Tourists were served cold buffets and in some instances asked to make their own beds and general keep their rooms tidy. Many watched in amazement at the pickets and in some instances it was a laughable state of affairs with tourist photographing the pickets who were laying seige to their hotel. According to the hoteliers association about 35 percent of hotel staff across Majorca had joined the strike. Unions said it was close to 90 percent. One of the major plus points about yesterday was the exceptionally hot weather with many people heading to the beach leaving the pickets to control empty resorts. This is what happened in the Playa de Palma where. Another hotspot was Palma airport. This was top on the list for pickets who starting gathering there at midnight. The police were forced to intervene as they attempted to block the road to stop the arrival of a coach full of tourists. The vehicle was heavily escorted by police vehicles. After some scuffles the police moved the strikers along allowing the coach to arrive and the tourists to disembark. The airlines and tour operators had made the necessary contigency plans either bringing forward flights or bringing them back. This meant that far fewer tourists arrived at the airport than expected. All the major British airlines had cancelled flights. Fears of a repeat of the chaos caused by last year's coach drivers strike were proved unfounded. One tourist said yesterday “the airport is like a ghost town, there is no-one here" Te port most ferry sailings had been suspended and the crane docks remained idle as no cargo was unloaded or loaded yesterday. At government departments a skeleton staff was maintained and they managed to cope with the small number of people who visited their offices.
Public transport was disrupted but some bus services were running. The Palma Municipal Bus Company said that they had managed to run about 60 percent of their usual services. Train services to Inca/Sa Pobla and Soller were severely disrupted. At one stage train staff had to remove a sofa which had been planted on the line. Most schools closed for the day meaning that this year the annual summer holidays have started a day earlier. Some of the biggest incidents of the day were at the two branches of El Corte Ingles where pickets attempted to close them down. After much noise and firework they abandoned their efforts.


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