Passengers delayed for hours after Gatwick Airport hit by air traffic control fault

9 December 2023, 12:14

Gatwick Airport has been hit by an ATC fault
Gatwick Airport has been hit by an ATC fault. Picture: Alamy

By Will Taylor

Gatwick Airport has been hit by hours-long delays after an air traffic control problem.

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A system outage on Saturday morning led to more than 20 flights failing to take off on time, with planes unable to depart as the system was reset.

Waiting aircraft were sent back to the stands as technicians got to work.

The glitch has been fixed but delays are likely to continue throughout Saturday.

"There was an outage to a local NATS system earlier this morning which has now been rectified," a spokesperson for Gatwick said.

Read more: Storm Elin: Brits face 55mph gusts and flooding as fresh yellow weather alerts issued for UK in bleak weekend

"No cancellations have resulted from this, but some passengers may experience delays.

"We apologise for any inconvenience."

Departures for Milan, Aberdeen and Murcia, Spain, were among the delays on Saturday morning.

One user said: "We are still sat at Gatwick. There has been nothing provided except a cereal bar and a glass of water in over 4 hours. People are becoming restless and upset. I just want to go back to bed!"

Another said on X: "Gatwick to Nantes has been on tarmac since before 7am. Is it going to fly at all?!"

A third user asked about the delays in fear it could affect their grandchild, who is due to fly to Lapland tomorrow ahead of Christmas.

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