A problem with the Flight Data Processing System at national air traffic control (Nats) is being blamed on flight chaos at British airports Wednesday night.
At 6.30pm thousands of travellers were caught up in delays after a computer failed at Nats’ West Drayton control centre.
Engineers were forced to close the computerised system and switch to manual operations for half an hour.
As a result restrictions were quickly placed on the number of aircrafts entering UK airspace and those taking off from major airports.
This swiftly led to passenger delays despite the fact the system was restored just after 7.00pm.
This is the second severe computer failure to hit Nats in the space of a year. It also comes as it is announced that proposed new European legislation will allow customers to claim for delayed flights.