British Airways Weighs Lawsuit to Block U.K. Quarantine

(Bloomberg) --

British Airways is considering a legal challenge to block the U.K.’s quarantine plan, a day after the carrier skipped a meeting with the government to discuss the measures in protest at a lack of consultation.

“It’s disproportionate and we are giving consideration to a legal challenge to this legislation,” Willie Walsh, the chief executive officer of BA parent IAG SA, said in an interview with Sky News. “It’s important to point out that there’s no consultation with the industry prior to enacting this legislation, and we do believe it is an irrational piece of legislation.”

Airlines have criticized the measures, which come into force next week, because they jeopardize their plans to restart business as the virus recedes. At the meeting Thursday evening, Home Secretary Priti Patel and Aviation Minister Kelly Tolhurst spoke with leaders from the aviation industry about the quarantine measures.

IAG SA said that neither IAG or BA attended the meeting. British Airways didn’t join the meeting because of the way the rules have been imposed, according to a person with knowledge of the matter, asking not to be identified because the information is private.

The rules, which require all incoming travelers to the U.K. to self-isolate for 14 days, are being introduced as carriers try to salvage the normally busy summer season. Ryanair Chief Executive Officer Michael O’Leary has also railed against the measures and previously accused the government of “making this up as it goes along.”

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