TAIPEI May 13 (CNA) — China Airlines (CAL), one of the country’s two major airlines, has been instructed by the government to assist EVA Air passengers if EVA’s flight schedule is disrupted due to a strike by its flight attendants, the Ministry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC) said Monday.

Deputy transport minister Wang Kwo-tsai (王國材) said on the sidelines of a legislative session that the ministry has prepared for the worst-case scenario and has instructed CAL to help with passenger transfers and extra flight operations.

The ministry declined to give any details about how CAL would be able to help with the situation.

A vote to strike organized by the Taoyuan Flight Attendants Union (TFAU) will take place on June 6, in which EVA members will decide whether to strike.

Wang said the ministry is particularly worried about the possible impact on peak travel time during the June 7-9 Dragon Boat Festival holiday and summer vacation.

The MOTC talked with the union last week and will have discussions with EVA this week, Wang said.

In order for a strike to pass, the vote will need the approval of more than half of its 5,600 members — comprising flight attendants from EVA, CAL, and other smaller carriers — according to the Act for Settlement of Labor-Management Disputes.

The union has also voluntarily set a second threshold, requiring that any vote to strike be approved by at least 80 percent of its 3,000 EVA members, to address concerns that the vote could be manipulated by non-EVA workers.

EVA members, who account for 75 percent of the carrier’s flight attendants, will cast their ballots between May 13 and May 26, according to the union, while CAL members will vote between May 27 and June 6, and members of other airlines will vote between June 3 and 6, it said.

By Lee Hsin-Yin