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Flights suspended at Gatwick Airport after drones spotted nearby

20 December, 2018, 10:28 | Author: Kristi Dunn
  • Gatwick Airport shuts over drone fears - ITV News

Gatwick is the eighth-busiest airport in Europe and sits behind Mumbai as the world's busiest single-runway air hub.

London's Gatwick Airport, the second-busiest in the United Kingdom, has shut down while officials urgently investigated reports that two drones were flying above the airfield.

According to the BBC, "Two of the unmanned devices were reportedly spotted near a runway, leading to delays and diversions as flights were suspended".

Passengers have been warned disruption could continue on Thursday.

The airport has advised anyone traveling on Wednesday or Thursday to check their flight status first, implying that the closure would last beyond Wednesday evening.

"We apologise to any affected passengers for this inconvenience, but the safety of our passengers and staff is our foremost priority", the airport said in a statement.

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A spokeswoman added that airlines were working to provide affected passengers with hotel accommodation or transport for those whose flights were diverted.

After spending about two hours on the plane, she said the couple were put on a bus to Gatwick, from where they had been due to fly to Istanbul.

The 27-year-old said passengers were then having to get taxis back to Gatwick after they were finally allowed off the aircraft.

Joe Bond's flight from Belfast was diverted to Birmingham. Other flights were sent to France and the Netherlands.

Oana Damian tweeted that her flight had been diverted to London Heathrow but no-one could disembark as there were no customs and ground handling operations in place to deal with the plane.

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