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Computer woes hit more Heathrow flights

LONDON, England (AP) — A computer problem in the baggage system at Heathrow airport’s new Terminal 5 on Saturday dashed British Airways’ hopes of resuming a full flight schedule, the airport operator said.

The new terminal — solely used by British Airways — ran into severe problems on its first day of operation last week.

In the following days, hundreds of flights have been canceled, thousands of bags have stacked up as flights left without them, and many disgruntled passengers have spent the night waiting on the airport floor for delayed flights.

The new baggage handling problems were a bitter blow for British Airways. The airline had endured one of its most difficult weeks, but said on Friday that the terminal was running very well and there was no falloff in bookings as a result of the problems, which analysts expected to cost the airline about $32 million.

On Saturday, the airline said 12 short-haul flights had been canceled, and departure boards at the airport showed delays of up to three hours.

The airport operator, BAA, said its staff had identified the problem and were considering how to solve it without creating further disruptions.

This is entirely BAA’s responsibility, the operator said in a statement. We apologize to British Airways and all passengers who have been affected and can assure them that our specialist staff are working hard to resolve the problem and keep disruption to BA’s operation to a minimum.

The computer problems have meant airline staff have had to deal with bags manually, taking more time than would normally be needed, a British Airways spokeswoman said on condition of anonymity in line with company policy.

We are urging BAA to resolve these issues as soon as possible, she said.

Passengers flying with British Airways have been advised to check flight information regularly before traveling to the airport.
Computer woes hit more Heathrow flights – found here.

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April 5, 2008 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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