UAE airlines advise UK passengers of possible delays

National Air Traffic Service says issue has been fixed but flights may still be affected

Etihad Airways and Emirates airline have advised passengers travelling to and from the UK that there may be flight delays due to air-traffic control issues.

Air-traffic control in the UK was hit by a technical fault that affected flights in and out of the country, with traffic flow restrictions applied for safety reasons.

The National Air Traffic Service on Monday said it had “identified and remedied the technical issue affecting our flight planning system” and was now “working closely with airlines and airports to manage the flights affected as efficiently as possible”.

“The flight planning issue affected the system’s ability to automatically process flight plans, meaning that flight plans had to be processed manually which cannot be done at the same volume, hence the requirement for traffic flow restrictions,” it said in a statement.

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Etihad Airways said that, while all flights are currently operating as scheduled, passengers may experience some delays as flights start to return to normal.

“Etihad Airways is advising passengers travelling to and from London and Manchester that there may be flight delays due to the ongoing Flight Data Processing System failure affecting all airlines operating in the UK,” it said in a statement.

“All flights are currently planned to operate as scheduled, however, we are working closely with airport authorities and will inform guests immediately if there is any change.”

It said anyone booked on its flights should check that contact details are up to date by visiting etihad.com/manage which will ensure the airline can issue the latest flight information.

Similarly, Emirates airline said that while the problem has been fixed, there may be disruptions to flights leaving the UK.

“Emirates has been advised that a widespread systems failure within UK Air Traffic Control on August 28 has been rectified,” an Emirates representative said.

“All flights currently en route to the United Kingdom will be allowed to land, but flights departing the UK may experience delays.

“Emirates continues to monitor the situation, and apologises to its customers for the inconvenience.”

Updated: August 28, 2023, 3:04 PM