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Gatwick Airport Runway Closure Disrupts Thousands of Passengers’ Travel Plans

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Passengers at Gatwick Airport experienced major disruptions as the runway had to close temporarily following a technical issue on a British Airways plane bound for Vancouver, Canada. The closure led to the cancellation of 23 flights, affecting thousands of travelers on what is believed to be one of the busiest days of the year at the airport.

Airport fire service vehicles assisted in moving the aircraft with overheated brakes off the runway. During the closure, 16 inbound flights were diverted, causing further delays and cancellations for the passengers.

According to a spokesperson from Gatwick Airport speaking to Sky News, safety measures were promptly implemented, and the dedicated airport fire service ensured swift action to resolve the situation. The runway was reopened after 50 minutes of closure, although disruptions continued with delays and further cancellations affecting flight schedules.

British Airways issued an apology to affected customers, stating that the decision to cancel take-off was a precautionary measure due to a technical issue on the aircraft. The airline assured that safety remains their top priority in such situations, expressing regret for any inconvenience caused to travelers.

Travel expert Simon Calder highlighted the ripple effect of the disruptions, with diversions and delays expected to impact ongoing flights. One flight from Dubai had to land in Brussels, and passengers faced uncertainty as schedules were rearranged to accommodate the disrupted operations.

Calder warned of potential cascading delays and cancellations as the day progressed, with some flights already experiencing significant delays stretching into hours. Passengers on various routes, including a Wizz Air flight to Malaga and a British Airways service to Dubrovnik, were among those affected by the runway closure.

Gatwick Airport, known for being the world’s busiest single-runway airport, faced similar challenges earlier this year, with disruptions occurring due to technical issues at passport control e-gates at other airports like Stansted.

Rachel Adams

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