Canadian airline WestJet, pilots reach 11th-hour deal as strike averted

CALGARY, Alberta (AP) — Canada’s second-largest airline WestJet and its pilots union say they have reached a last-minute deal to avert a strike on Friday before a holiday weekend in the country. A statement from the Air Line Pilots Association says union leaders voted to approve an agreement-in-principle with a membership vote to begin in the coming days. The airline had grounded the bulk of its fleet Thursday including for its Swoop subsidiary. It parked their 130 planes at airports across Canada. That left thousands of travelers in limbo across the country The shutdown affected dozens of routes within Canada and to the U.S. and overseas while flights at the WestJet Encore regional service and the WestJet-owned Sunwing Airlines were unaffected.