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Airport News - North America.

Sep 1, 2008

Major US airports were operating normally on Tuesday Aug. 26 evening after a glitch in the computer system for filing flight plans delayed hundreds of flights, the Federal Aviation Administration said. The Department of Homeland Security said there was no link to terrorism and the FAA said the computer glitch did not affect its ability to safely track planes in the air. FAA spokeswoman Laura Brown said the problem was resolved around 6 pm EDT (2200 GMT), about 4 1/2 hours after a communications link failed in the system that processes flight plans at a facility south of Atlanta. The agency's best guess is that "hundreds" of flights across a wide swath of the United States from Dallas and Chicago to the East Coast had been delayed by the computer breakdown, Brown said, adding that the FAA would not have an exact count until Wednesday. Aug 26, 2008

The cause of Tuesday's FAA air traffic control computer failure on Tuesday Aug. 26 was not known but it was not due to a computer hacking attack, said Hank Krakowski, chief operations officer for the FAA's air traffic division. Flight plans include information such as the type of aircraft, destination and number of passengers. The other flight-plan facility in Salt Lake City had to handle the entire country when the Atlanta system failed but the backup system quickly overloaded, Brown said. FAA spokeswoman Diane Spitalire said the agency had never experienced a computer problem this severe. "We've had some equipment failures but not like this," she said. An FAA communications outage in Memphis last year caused huge air-traffic snarls. The technicians' union blamed FAA cost-cutting for reducing backup standards. Aug 26, 2008

Air France, Boeing

An Air France KLM Boeing 747 aircraft on a flight from Paris skidded off the runway after landing at Montreal's Trudeau Airport on Tuesday but there were no injuries or serious damage, police said. Passengers were taken off the plane by emergency crews after it overshot the runway and became stuck in the grass. Operations at the airport were not seriously affected and planes continued to land and take off. Aug 27, 2008

Atlanta

US FAA said it fixed a glitch in its National Airspace Data Interchange Network based near Atlanta that caused more than 600 flight delays Tuesday, including numerous delays as long as 90 min. at several major airports in the eastern US. The system failed for about 6 hr., forcing all flight plans to be filed with FAA's only other NADIN in Salt Lake City. That system overloaded as a result of the extra work and some flight plans had to be entered manually. Operations were back to normal yesterday. The agency said it is attempting to determine the "root cause" of the failure to prevent a recurrence. Aug 28, 2008

Atlanta Hartsfield International

A US FAA computer system near Atlanta that processes flight plans failed yesterday, causing delays at major airports throughout the US, with the heaviest disruptions occurring in the eastern part of the country. The agency said that safety was not compromised but that flight plans were being submitted manually rather than electronically, causing traffic to back up. The system is one of only two in the US that processes flight plans; the other is in Salt Lake City. Delays of 30 min.-1 hr. or longer were reported at several major airports. Disruptions were less severe at western US airports. Aug 27, 2008

Los Angeles

Los Angeles International Airport workers halted a day-old strike and returned to work on Friday after Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa brokered a truce with companies providing ground services for major airlines. The walkout ended as the world's fifth busiest passenger airport, and third busiest in the United States, headed into the bustling Labor Day holiday weekend, during which an estimated 825,000 travelers are expected to pass through LAX. The airline service companies and the Service Employees International Union agreed to resume contract negotiations next week under a three week "cooling-off" period called for by Villaraigosa. They also agreed that striking workers would return to work without retaliation from management. A union spokesman said workers were back on the job by 8:30 a.m. local time. Aug 30, 2008

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Date:Sep 1, 2008
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