BA Computer Glitch Causes Third Day of Flight Delays Worldwide : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

03/17 06:32 BA Computer Glitch Causes Third Day of Flight Delays Worldwide By Justin Carrigan

London, March 17 (Bloomberg) -- British Airways Plc, Europe's largest airline, said hundreds of flights worldwide are being delayed for a third day, disrupting travel for thousands of customers, because of a malfunction in its computer systems.

Flights were being put back as much as one hour due to ``corrupted files'' at its Heathrow Airport, London-based computer mainframe. The error affects the monitoring system for passengers checking in for departure, BA said.

``It's affecting BA systems at all airports around the world,'' said Karen Franklin, a company spokeswoman.

BA began reporting delays after a systems upgrade on Tuesday corrupted some of the links that retrieve information, requiring passengers to be checked-in manually. Hundreds of flights were delayed yesterday and three were canceled altogether, two of them to the U.S. and one to Japan, the company said.

No flights have been canceled so far today, said Franklin, who added work was going on around the clock to resolve the problem. BA said Thursday it expected the fault to be fixed within a week.

-- Martin Thompson (, March 17, 2001


The Associated Press

LONDON (March 17, 2001 5:25 p.m. EST

- British Airways struggled to restore its computer check-in system Saturday while the glitch left thousands of air travelers facing a third day of delays.

The system went down earlier in the week, forcing British Airways staff at airports around the world to check in all passengers manually.

Flights from London's Heathrow Airport were delayed by an average of 45 minutes, the airline said, and long lines built up at check-in counters. One flight to St. Petersburg was canceled. Several flights also were canceled on Thursday and Friday.

"The situation is under control and the delays are beginning to shorten," said Mike Street, British Airways' director of customer services and operations.

The airline said it had called in extra staff, but warned it could be several days before the situation returned to normal.,2469,500464767- 500709705-503903252-0,00.html

-- Martin Thompson (, March 17, 2001.

BA Continues To Battle With Computer Glitch Mar 21, 2001

British Airways (BA) said yesterday that it was still working to fix a computer glitch which hit its reservation system a week ago and has led to hundreds of delayed flights.

Routine maintenance on the system caused some of the links to the mainframe to crash.

BA check-in staff around the world, unable to access some bookings, have had to resort to manual procedures for those passengers affected.

Last Friday, more than 100 BA flights were delayed by an average of 45 minutes and the carrier was forced to cancel seven flights.

BA said: "We apologise to every customer who has experienced delays and have teams working around the clock to solve the problem."

It has brought in an extra 50 staff to help passengers at London's Heathrow and Gatwick airports.

-- Martin Thompson (, March 21, 2001.

BA denies IT glitch

BRITISH Airways denied accusations yesterday that a controversial transfer of the airline’s computer reservation system to a new operator was to blame for a crippling glitch that grounded dozens of its aircraft this week.

The company, which has been beset by IT difficulties in the last year, has maintained that the problems had arisen from "routine maintenance" carried out on its IBM computer mainframe.

But yesterday it was revealed that work carried out in conjunction with US-based company Amadeus to upgrade BA’s ageing computer system had triggered the global disruption.

The airline is currently outsourcing the management of its computer reservations system, known as "BABS" to the specialist software company.

Computer staff at the airline have claimed that the transfer of control has been "rushed" and "not thought through".

It is also beleived that staff had warned BA executives that severe problems would arise prior to last week’s chaos, but they were ignored.

BABS is thought to be at least 10 years old, and has come under increasing strain from the rise in flights and passenger numbers. It is due to be replaced by Amadeus’ system towards the end of this year.

It was also reported yesterday that BA had secretly implemented OPIC (Operational Procedures in Crisis), a crisis management set-up usually reserved for times of emergency such as a plane crash.

A spokesman for BA played down the extent of the flight delays and denied the problem was a direct result of its decision to outsource its systems.

"Relatively speaking, the number of flights cancelled were very few. Things are now beginning to return to normal and passengers will see significantly less disruption as the week goes."

A spokeswoman for Amadeus yesterday claimed that the problem lay with BA’s antiquated systems, rather than its software. "Its the fault of their technology, not ours," she said.

The "glitch", which first caused problems last Tuesday, forced staff to check in passengers manually. At least 100 flights in the UK were disrupted at the height of the crisis last Friday, with three Heathrow services cancelled. At least 50 extra staff were drafted in to cope with irate passengers at Gatwick and Heathrow.

BA’s rivals yesterday cast doubt on it’s ability to resolve computer difficulties in the short term.

A spokesman for Virgin Atlantic said: "I would like to think that passengers judge an airline on what it does rather than on what it says." He added that Virgin had had a "very healthy week" on the back of BA’s problems.

Andrew Murray-Watson Saturday, 24th March 2001 The Scotsman

-- Martin Thompson (, March 24, 2001.

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