Airport systems break, causing chaos at airports in London, the US and around the world

The 'computer glitch' is now fixed, but passengers are reporting waiting for hours while knock-on issues are resolved

Andrew Griffin
Thursday 28 September 2017 13:11
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Airlines at London's Gatwick – and many other of the world's biggest airports – were hit by the issues
Airlines at London's Gatwick – and many other of the world's biggest airports – were hit by the issues

Airline systems around the world broke briefly, causing disruptions in a number of major airports around the world.

The issues – which appear to be with one of the core systems airlines use to manage their passengers – now appear to have been resolved, according to people working at airports.

Images posted on social media showed people queueing to board flights amid the problems. But it's not yet clear how long those delays were and whether they are causing any further disruption.

The issues appear to be with Amadeus Altea, a piece of software that airlines use to check people in and out and monitor them as they do so. It is used by a huge number of airlines – 125 in all, flying to and from airports across the globe.

The software is now slowly being restored but could take some time to fully fix – and even longer to deal with the fallout from the outage. Amadeus said that it "experienced a network issue that caused disruption to some of our systems" and that "action is ongoing with services gradually being restored".

That has led to problems at many of the world's biggest airports, including London Gatwick, Paris's Charles de Gaulle and Reagan Airport in Washington DC. Passengers in Singapore and Melbourne also reported problems.

Airlines using the software also consist of many of the biggest and national flag carrying airlines, including British Airways, France-KLM and Lufthansa.

Since the software is used by the airlines and not by airports, they travelled quickly across the world.

The issues were called by a small glitch in the software used globally, and it was offline for only about 15 minutes, according to a member of staff at Gatwick Airport. But it is back up online and working – though the issues may take some time to clear.

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