DALLAS – UK airspace has been hit by a “network-wide” failure,” on one of the busiest days of the year as thousands of passengers were expected to travel on this bank holiday Monday. Airlines have begun warning passengers of severe delays to flights.
According to the BBC, the National Air Traffic Services (NATS) has said that it was experiencing “technical issues.” This has led it to apply “traffic flow restrictions to maintain safety.” It added, “Engineers are working to find and fix the fault. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.” No further information has been provided.
NATS has however emphasised that UK airspace is “not closed.”
Based in Swanwick, Hampshire, NATS handles 2.5 million flights annually, with 250 million passengers traveling across the country’s airspace. NATS also provide ATC services in Asia, Europe and the Middle East.
Scottish carrier Loganair (LM) has said on its social media channels that the failure had delayed some of its flights: “There has been a network-wide failure of UK air traffic control computer systems this morning. Although we are hopeful of being able to operate most intra-Scotland flights on the basis of local coordination and with a minimum of disruption, north-south and international flights maybe subject to delays. If you are flying with us today, please check our website for the latest information about your flight before setting off for the airport.”
Meanwhile, easyJet (U2) has said in a Travel Update: “We have been advised of an Air traffic control issue currently affecting all flights due to fly into or out of United Kingdom airspace. We are working with the relevant authorities to understand the impact of this issue and the timescale for normal operations to resume.
If you are already onboard one of our planes waiting to take off then our crew will keep you updated. If you are in one of our airports waiting to board then please continue to check the flight information screens in the terminal and we will provide further updates here on flight tracker. Any customers affected by delays and disruption to their flight will receive email and sms information direct to the contact details provided at the time of booking.
If your flight is due to depart later today, we ask that you continue with your travel plans at this time. Even if your flight is not flying from or to the United Kingdom, your plane may be affected from an earlier flight that was impacted by this issue.”
This is a breaking news story, and we will keep you updated with more news as we get it.
Featured Image: NATS.