Drones Disrupt Flights At London Gatwick Airport
As just recently a drone hit an Aeromexico Boeing 737, it seems there is even more trouble with drones. This time – on the other side of the pond. People sighted drones flying above the airport territory. So, the London Gatwick Airport authority closed down the airport due to safety concerns. Gatwick runways were briefly opened in the early hours of the morning, from 3:00 AM.
Unfortunately, after 45 minutes of running, workers on ground spotter more drones flying around the territory of the airport. Authorities have closed down the airport. London Gatwick authorities and Sussex police are still investigating the incidents.
As a result of the disruption, flights that were supposed to land in London Gatwick Airport were redirected to other airports, such as London Heathrow, London Luton and Birmingham. Furthermore, some flights have been redirected to airports that are quite some distance away from Gatwick, namely Paris Charles de Gaulle and Amsterdam.
The airport’s chief operating officer said that over 2000 flights have been grounded during this time period and it affected more than 10,000 passengers in London Gatwick airport alone. Over 20 police units are currently on the premises of the airport, trying to find the person operating the drone.
Above all, no serious accident occurred amidst the chaos. London Gatwick authorities have tweeted that “We’re sorry for the inconvenience today, but the safety of our passengers and staff is our no.1 priority.”
Nevertheless, as incidents such as these occur more often, people are outraged that they can still disrupt normal flight procedures. Laws prohibit flying a drone within a 1 kilometer distance of an airport. But it seems like the punishment is not enough to deter drone operators of doing so. People are calling for more safety measures to take place to prevent these types of incidents.