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British Airways says technical issues delay some flights

British Airways says technical issues delay some flights

Grounded British Airways planes sit on the tarmac at Heathrow airport Terminal 5 in west London on Sep 9, 2019. (Photo: AFP/Ben STANSALL)

LONDON: British Airways said some flights were delayed on Thursday (Nov 21) due to an unspecified technical issue which forced it to cancel some flights a day earlier.

The airline has suffered three major computer failures since 2017, the latest of which seriously disrupted operations in August.

"Our teams are working hard to resolve a technical issue which is affecting some of our flights," said a spokeswoman for BA, owned by airlines group IAG.

"We have rebooked customers on to alternative flights and offered hotel accommodation where they have been unable to continue their journeys last night.

"We are very sorry for the disruption to their travel plans. We plan to operate a full flight schedule today," she added.

BA warned that there would be knock-on delays - but declined to comment on the nature of the problem nor the number of flights affected.

British Airways in July was fined US$230 million for a huge customer data breach and in September was hit by its first ever pilot strike.

"This is the latest in a long line of British Airways technical glitches causing delays and cancellations," said Rory Boland, editor of consumer magazine Which? Travel.

"Yet again it's thousands of passengers who are paying the price - left tired, frustrated and with a lack of information and assistance from the airline."

Chief Commercial Officer Andrew Brem said that he did not know the details of the latest outage but passengers should not be worried about technical issues at the airline.

"A lot of airlines have occasional outages. Part of the £6.5 billion investment is going on revamping our IT systems end to end - commercial systems, operational systems, everything," he told Reuters at an event to launch the Airbus A350 on the London-Tel Aviv route.

He adding that he was hopeful for progress in resolving a dispute with pilots union BALPA.

The union, which currently has no industrial action planned, in September held a 48-hour strike which grounded 1,700 flights.

"I am cautiously optimistic that we will come to an agreement. In a sense, no news is positive news," he said.

"I hope we will be able to announce in the not to distant future we have come to an agreement."

Source: Reuters/afp/ec


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