On Dec. 12, 2014, all London airspace was closed because of a computer failure, and no flights would be accepted in or out of London until 7 p.m (GMT). The closure of the airspace affected the third busiest airport in the world; London Heathrow, along with London City, Luton, Stansted and Gatwick.
The failure of the computer affected the air traffic control center in Swanwick. The control center controls all the routes in England and Wales. The centre is called ‘NATS’ and they provide air traffic navigation services to aircraft flying through the UK. The computer failure did not affect Scotland because of a second air traffic control center in Prestwick.
Later, all incoming aircraft that were all ready in the airspace landed, but had to take direct arrival routes to the airports. All aircraft on the ground could not depart. Aircraft that were going to London that weren’t in the airspace at the time had to drivert to the nearest airport out of the airspace.
“We anticipate disruption to both departing and arriving aircraft but will do all we can to minimise any impact,” said a Spokesman for British Airways.
The problem was said to have a knock-on effect for flights on Saturday because of Crew and thier planes will not be in the correct postions.
“We are in the process of returning to normal operations. We apologise for any delays and the inconvenience this may have caused,” said a Spokesperson for NATS.
Flights are now departing from some airports including Heathrow, Luton and Gatwick (LHR) after long delays.
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