More than 2,500 flights delayed after computer blackout

Flights are being delayed at various locations across the United States after a computer outage at the Federal Aviation Administration. As the agency works to restore its systems, it has ordered all domestic flights to be grounded until 9 a.m. ET.

Just before 8 a.m. Eastern Time, there were more than 2,500 delayed flights within, to, or from the United States, according to flight tracking website FlightAware. Nearly 1,500 flights have been cancelled, including nearly 200 in the US.


what you need to know

  • Flights are being delayed in several locations across the United States after a computer outage at the Federal Aviation Administration
  • White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre said “there is no evidence of a cyberattack at this time,” but President Joe Biden has ordered the Department of Transportation to “conduct a full investigation into the causes” of the outage. .
  • As the agency works to restore its systems, it has ordered all domestic flights to be grounded until 9 a.m. ET.
  • Just before 8 a.m. Eastern Time, there were more than 2,500 delayed flights within, to, or from the United States, according to flight tracking website FlightAware.

The FAA said in a Twitter post that it was working on restoring what is known as its Air Mission Notification System.

“The FAA is still working to fully restore the Air Mission Alert system following an outage,” the agency wrote on Twitter. “The FAA has directed airlines to pause all domestic departures until 9 a.m. Eastern time to allow the agency to validate the integrity of flight and safety information.”

Before beginning a flight, pilots should consult NOTAMs, or Notices to Air Missions, which list potential adverse impacts on flights, from runway construction to the possibility of icing. The system used to be telephone-based, with pilots calling dedicated flight service stations for information, but has now moved online.

There is a possibility of a widespread outage due to the outage. All aircraft must route through the system, including commercial and military flights.

European flights to the US appeared to be largely unaffected.

The agency said it would continue to provide frequent updates as it progresses.

President Joe Biden was briefed on the situation by Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said Wednesday morning.

“There is no evidence of a cyberattack at this time, but the president has directed DOT to conduct a full investigation into the causes,” Jean-Pierre said.

“I have contacted the FAA this morning about an outage affecting a key system for providing safety information to pilots,” Transportation Secretary Buttigieg wrote on Twitter. “FAA is working to quickly and safely resolve this issue so air traffic can resume normal operations and will continue to provide updates.”

Airlines also updated customers amid the outage.

“United has temporarily delayed all domestic flights and will issue an update when we hear more from the FAA,” the airline wrote on Twitter.

“An FAA outage is affecting all flights, including all airlines,” American Airlines wrote in response to a customer on Twitter. “We sincerely appreciate your patience as they work to resolve this.”

“We are closely monitoring the situation, which affects all airlines, and working with the FAA to minimize disruption to our operations and customers,” American Airlines wrote in a subsequent statement. “Customers are encouraged to check aa.com for the latest flight information.”

“We are closely monitoring a data issue with the FAA that may affect the start of operations today, January 11, 2023,” Southwest Airlines wrote on Twitter. “Please check your flight status in the Southwest app or at Southwest.com for any changes to your flight status.”

This is a developing story. Come back later for updates.



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