British Airways has suffered a major outage, causing several flights to be cancelled and leaving passengers stuck on planes after landing at Heathrow.
The airline’s website and app were down for hours on Friday evening, leaving customers unable to check in online or book flights.
The airline confirmed that the outage was not due to a cyber attack and said passengers whose flights were cancelled will be offered a refund or rebook options.
‘BA running on paper’
Ed Hall, 54, a television executive from Woodstock, Oxfordshire, was stranded on a plane for over an hour after touching down at Heathrow Terminal 5 because the crew could not access any IT systems to get a stand where passengers could disembark.
He said there were issues even before his BA 399 flight took off from Brussels.
Mr Hall told the Press Association: “We couldn’t take off as the pilot’s system that calculates weight, loads and distribution went offline and we had to go back to the gate from the runway to get a (manual) copy sent from London.
“BA is running on paper tonight.”
‘We have backup plans’
British Airways said in a statement: “We are experiencing significant technical issues this evening which are affecting the running of our operation and regrettably has led to the cancellation of a number of flights.
“We are working as quickly as possible to resolve things and we have backup plans in place so that customers flying can still check-in at the airport this evening.
“We apologise that this might be slower than usual, but we are doing everything we can to get as many of our flights away as planned.”
Passengers concerned about their flights on Saturday will be notified of any changes by the company, which said it will “make decisions” about its weekend operation as soon as possible.
Second outage in 10 days
The outage is the second in 10 days at BA.
Meanwhile, Heathrow Airport said its systems and air traffic control were operating as normal.
It added: “We are aware of a technical issue that @British_Airways are investigating and we will be working with them to provide updates to passengers as soon as they are available.”