The Daily Telegraph

Heathrow delays caused by high winds and staffing levels

- By Daily Telegraph Reporters

PASSENGERS yesterday faced delays at Heathrow airport after strong winds and staff shortages led to air traffic control restrictio­ns.

It comes following reports from angry passengers on social media on Sunday who said their flights had been delayed or cancelled.

“Strong wind is forecast today, while there may be minor changes to today’s schedule as a result of the weather, we want to reassure passengers that our colleagues are working in close collaborat­ion with our airline and air traffic control partners to get them safely on their journeys as quickly as possible,” a spokesman for the airport said, adding that passengers should check with their airline for the latest informatio­n.

However, the National Air Traffic Services (Nats) said that staff shortages were also a factor. “Due to short notice staff absence in the tower and strong winds at Heathrow, temporary ATC restrictio­ns are currently in place,” Nats said in a statement. “We expect the situation to improve this afternoon.

“We are working hard to minimise disruption, working closely with Heathrow airport and airlines..

“Restrictio­ns of this sort are only ever applied to ensure safety and we apologise for any inconvenie­nce caused.”

British Airways said that it had been forced to make some adjustment­s to its short-haul schedule as a result of the restrictio­ns.

“Air traffic control restrictio­ns imposed on all airlines at London Heathrow mean we’ve had to make some adjustment­s to our short-haul schedule,” a spokespers­on said.

“We’ve contacted affected customers to apologise and offer them rebooking options or a full refund.”

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