London Gatwick Airport: Passengers’ travel plans thrown into chaos as staff shortages and bad weather cause flight cancellations
and live on Freeview channel 276
Forty of Gatwick’s 405 scheduled flights were cancelled on Monday [July 24] due to air traffic control issues.
Further disruption was caused by last minute staff shortages at Gatwick’s control tower.
Thirty flights were grounded by easyJet, while Wizz Air and Norwegian cancelled four flights each.
Vueling also cancelled incoming and outgoing flights to Rome, Bilbao and Paris.
A statement on London Gatwick Airport’s Twitter account said: “Disruption this evening has been caused by last minute staff shortages at the control tower and also air traffic restrictions due to poor weather conditions across Europe.”
Speaking to the Independent, a spokesperson from the airport added: “Gatwick has more flights to Europe than any other UK airport and can be impacted disproportionately by disruption on the Continent.
“We are working closely with our airline partners to minimise disruption and apologise to any passengers who may be inconvenienced.”
National Air Traffic Services said flight restrictions were put in place to ‘ensure that traffic could continue to be managed safely’.
Also speaking to the Independent, a National Air Traffic Services spokesperson said: “Air-traffic control restrictions were put in place yesterday evening due to poor weather across Europe and a short notice staffing issue affecting our air-traffic control team at Gatwick airport.
“This was done to ensure that traffic could continue to be managed safely. We worked closely with the airport and airlines to minimise disruption as far as possible, and we sincerely apologise for any inconvenience it caused.”
The disruption also ran into Tuesday [July 25]. EasyJet made a dozen more cancellations due to air-traffic control restrictions.