British Airways flights cancelled due to system outage

Airline cancels all flights from Heathrow and Gatwick airports after IT failure caused severe delays.

    British Airways flights cancelled due to system outage
    The airline said terminals at Heathrow and Gatwick had become extremely congested because of the IT failure [FILE: Reuters]

    British Airways cancelled all its flights from London's two main airports on Saturday after a global computer system outage caused massive delays and left planes stuck on runways.

    BA said there was no evidence the problem had been caused by a cyber attack.

    Several hours after problems began cropping up Saturday morning, BA cancelled flights up to 1800 GMT because the two airports had become severely congested. The airline later scrapped flights from Heathrow and Gatwick for the rest of the day.

    "Please do not come to the airports. We have experienced a major IT system failure that is causing very severe disruption to our flight operations worldwide," the airline said in a statement.

    "We are extremely sorry for the inconvenience this is causing our customers and we are working to resolve the situation as quickly as possible."

    London's Heathrow Airport, one of the world's busiest, said it was working with BA [Reuters]

    The problems, which passengers said had affected flights across Britain, came on a particularly busy weekend with a public holiday on Monday and many children starting their school half-term breaks.

    BA is the latest airline to be hit by computer problems. Last month Germany's Lufthansa and Air France suffered a global system outage which prevented them from boarding passengers.

    Passengers trying to catch planes in Britain on Saturday reported long delays at check-in desks and flights being held on runways.

    "Still on the tarmac at Leeds. #britishairways reckon Heathrow is so backed up we can't set off. No way we'll make our Vegas flight," one passenger David Raine wrote on Twitter.

    Another, journalist Martyn Kent, wrote: "Sat on plane at Heathrow for hour and a half now. @British_Airways Captain describes IT problem as 'catastrophic'."

    London's Heathrow Airport, one of the world's busiest, said it was working with BA. 

    SOURCE: News agencies


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