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All of London airspace closed to traffic because of a power outage

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December 12, 2014

All of London's airspace is currently closed to all incoming and departing traffic because of a power outage at the National Air Traffic Services.

According to the European Organization for the Safety of Air Navigation, a computer failure has resulted in all airspace over the British capital being closed.

All flights from Heathrow have reportedly been put on hold because of the outage. “There is a power failure at the NATS control centre in Swanwick, which is affecting all British airspace. Flights are currently experiencing several delays and we will update passengers as soon as we have more information," said a spokesman from Heathrow.

NATS confirmed the outage was due to a technical issue at its Swanwick air traffic control centre, which we understand is some sort of a power failure.

A NATS spokesman said-- "We apologise for any delays and our incident response team has been mobilised. Every possible action is being taken to assist in resolving this situation and to confirm the details."

An eye witness tells us that no flights are leaving London Gatwick airport. A Gatwick airport spokesman confirmed that no flights are currently departing from the airport.

Luton airport would not comment when we contacted them. A spokesman from Stansted Airport said flights are still landing at the airport but all departing flights are being held until further notice.

As of 4.00 PM local time, London airspace was partially reopened but traffic volumes are restricted following the power failure.

That a major international European hub such as Heathrow is totally paralyzed due to an easily avoidable power outage in a server room in 2014 is totally unacceptable.

Source: The U.K. National Air Traffic Services.

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