August 1, 2018 / 6:39 PM / 2 months ago

Eiffel Tower shuts as workers strike over long visitor queues

PARIS (Reuters) - Staff at the Eiffel Tower walked out on strike on Wednesday in a dispute over lengthening queues at the Paris landmark, forcing it to close during the peak summer tourist season.

FILE PHOTO: Visitors queue to visit the Eiffel tower in Paris, France, June 2, 2018. REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer/File Photo

Talks between the CGT trade union and the tower’s management over a new access system - which according to workers was responsible for “monstrous” lines of visitors - reached deadlock on Wednesday afternoon, and the site closed at 4 pm (1400 GMT).

It was not clear whether the strike would continue on Thursday.

The new system, which from July has reserved separate lifts for different types of ticket-holders, was exhausting staff who had to deal with the frustrated tourists, union officials said.

The site’s management has said the summer months were always busy.

Each year over six million tourists go up the 342-meter (1,063-foot) tower, the French capital’s most famous attraction.

FILE PHOTO: The Eiffel Tower is lit up during an open air concert, in a picture taken from the Montparnasse Tower Observation Deck, at the end of Bastille Day events in Paris, France, July 14, 2018. REUTERS/Pascal Rossignol

Reporting by Jack Hunter, Editing by Sarah White and David Stamp

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