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Flights Canceled Amid Global British Airways Computer Outage: What's Going On?

27 May 2017, 1:20 pm EDT By Alexandra Burlacu Tech Times
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British Airways flights are facing major disruptions on Saturday as a global computer outage forced the airline to delay or cancel most flights.

No timeline is available yet regarding when it will manage to solve the issues, but British Airlines took to Twitter to confirm that it was struggling with a "global systems outage." The UK national carrier apologized for the inconvenience and said it was working to resolve the problems as soon as possible.

British Airways Flights Delayed Or Canceled

"We apologise for the current IT systems outage. We are working to resolve the problem as quickly as possible," British Airways said in a tweet.

The computer outage means that parts of British Airways' website are unusable and some customers could not even check into the mobile application. At the same time, British Airways planes landing at Heathrow have no room as outbound planes can't vacate the gates. As a result, travelers are stuck on planes for the time being.

Heathrow And Gatwick Airports Extremely Congested

British Airways has also canceled all flights from London's Gatwick and Heathrow airports until 6 p.m. GMT (10 a.m. PDT, 1 p.m. EST), with Heathrow Airport advising travelers not to go to the airports. For later flights, passengers should check the status before heading to the airport as the major disruptions could extend.

British Airways Computer Outage Causes Major Disruptions

British Airways travelers reported long queues at check-in counters, baggage issues, and flight delays. With the IT system failure, British Airways staff ultimately had to resort to white boards to write gate numbers. Self-check-in machines don't work either.

Passengers cannot transfer to other flights either, as the computer outage also means that British Airways cannot bring up any passenger details.

Heathrow Airport is among the world's busiest airports and the problems at terminal 5, where British Airways is based, caused major congestion. Many passengers are still waiting for information on when their flight might eventually depart, but at the moment things still seem hazy.

"I have only seen 1 plane leave terminal 5 in the last hour. Long line of planes on the tarmac," reported a British Airways traveler.

The situation is undoubtedly frustrating and unpleasant, but British Airways is hardly the first airline to struggle with such issues. Just last month, Air France and Lufthansa had a similar global systems outage, preventing them from boarding passengers.

No Evidence Of A Cyberattack, Says British Airways

On the bright side, British Airways says that it hasn't found any clues of a security breach.

"There's no evidence it's a cyberattack," said airline officials, as cited by CNN. 

British Airways said it will keep people updated as soon as it has more information, and it will communicate updates through Twitter, its website, and airport communication channels.

It remains unclear for now just how many flights it had to delay or cancel, or how many people have been affected by this disruption. British Airways has not offered any information regarding what may have caused the issues.

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