British Airways to resume full flight schedule

Marco Green
June 5, 2017

"At this stage we know there was an exceptional power surge that collapsed our IT systems, bringing down all our flight, baggage and customer communication systems", said the CEO of British Airways, Alex Cruz, in a statement Monday.

BA cancelled all its flights out of Heathrow and Gatwick on Saturday after the IT failure, which shut down all of the carrier's check-in and operational systems and affected call centers and its website.

The airline said it was running a full schedule at London's Gatwick airport on Monday and planned to operate all its long-haul flights from Heathrow, although some short-haul flights had been cancelled. That figure does not include the cost of reimbursing customers for hotel stays. The U.K. carrier canceled 50 flights, or about 6 percent of the total 852 scheduled, to and from its main London Heathrow hub on Monday, according to the British Airways website.

No-one from the airline has been able to answer questions about the IT system crash, and BA has not explained why there was no back-up system in place.

Over the weekend, some stranded passengers curled up under blankets on the floor or slumped on luggage trolleys, images that played prominently online and in newspapers.

BA also promised to honor its obligations under European Union compensation rules. Of the 75,000 passengers who missed out on flights, around two-thirds would have been flown to their destinations by the end of Monday, he added.

Cruz said the hardware problem was restored "after a few hours", and promised the company would "make sure that it doesn't happen again".

Ryanair said it had seen a spike in bookings over the weekend but gave no further details.

"This could have all been avoided".

The crisis, which the GMB union has blamed the problem on technical staff being outsourced from the United Kingdom to India, caused the share price of BA's parent company IAG to fall 2.5%.

Cruz rejected the union criticism.

Thousands of passengers were left stranded over a busy holiday weekend in Britain after BA scrapped hundreds of flights worldwide.

Cruz said the IT failure was the result of "local issues around a local data centre.managed and fixed by local resources", the Press Association reported.

Several passengers complained about a lack of information from BA staff at the airport.

The airline apologised to customers for the issue, which is thought to have been caused by a problem with the IT system's power supply.

The airline cancelled more short-haul flights from Heathrow yesterday but it has not explained the cause of the problem, which left large numbers of passengers sleeping in airport terminals. These can amount to €600 ($670) per passenger and the airline has also had to pay for refreshments and other expenses for tens of thousands of passengers stranded at airports.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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