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Couple left stuck on runway for 10 hours after flight is delayed due to airport chaos

Couple left stuck on runway for 10 hours after flight is delayed due to airport chaos

The pair spent nearly half a day on the plane

One couple were left stuck on a runway for 10 hours after their flight was delayed due to the ongoing airport chaos.

Amid the sheer pandemonium taking places across airports all over the UK, one pair of holidaymakers were made to stay put in a stationary plane for nearly half a day following an air traffic control 'technical issue'.

The situation came about after a major outage hit Britain's air traffic control system resulting in the cancellation of more than 1,200 flights at the end of the bumper Bank Holiday weekend.

The 'network-wide' failure meant that controllers were left having to enter flight details manually which, in turn, led to significant delays with many passengers being stuck on grounded planes for hours on end.

While such passengers may be entitled to some money back for hotel or meal expenses from their airline, they will not be able to claim statutory compensation as the whole ordeal has been described as an 'extraordinary circumstance'.

One of those passengers affected, Alisha, has since taken to TikTok to share her experience.

The pair were made to stay on the plane runway for a whole 10 hours.

The overlay text on the TikTok video reads: "POV: your flight from Alicante to Belfast was supposed to take off at 12:20 but there's a fault with London's air traffic control and you're stuck on the runway until 7:30pm and all you can do is read the safety card."

Alisha captioned the short clip: "6 hours to go!!!"

At the time of writing, the TikTok video has since clocked up more than 109.6k views in under 24 hours from when it was posted.

Dozens have since flocked to the comments section to share their reactions to the major ordeal, with many sharing how the technical fault personally affected their own trips.

People rushed in to share their own nightmare stories following the technical fault.

One TikTok user wrote: "Meant to fly back to Stansted yesterday and now we’re in Belfast until Thursday."

A revealed a second: "Was supposed to fly from here yesterday at 16:55 - got cancelled and can’t fly home until Sat!!"

While a third penned: "Same as me! Meant to fly at 12 flew at like 7."

Oh and it didn't stop there.

"I’m in Girona airport right now waiting to go to Belfast… already delayed by three hours :( supposed to leave at 11:10 but I’m not hopeful ahhahaha," commented a fourth.

A fifth chimed in: "Ours was cancelled coming back from Zante, put up in a hotel, 36hr delay."


In an update, Alisha explained to viewers: "If we don't take off in 3 hours it's cancelled happy MONDAY.

"We spent 10 hours on the plane and finally got home - was so lucky that we even took off considering everyone else's situations!!

"Plane had ran out of majority of food and drink by the time we took off it was rough!"

Alisha read the 'safety card' to try and pass the time.

Now that's a mare and a half if I've ever heard of one.

In a statement, the National Air Traffic Services (NATS) apologised for the disruption, saying: "We have identified and remedied the technical issue affecting our flight planning system this morning.

"Our engineers will be carefully monitoring the system’s performance as we return to normal operations.

"The flight planning issue affected the system’s ability to automatically process flight plans, meaning that flight plans had to be processed manually which cannot be done at the same volume, hence the requirement for traffic flow restrictions."

NATS later updated its initial statement to add: "It will take some time for flights to return to normal and we will continue to work with the airports and airlines to recover the situation."

They also advised: "Our priority is always to ensure that every flight in the UK remains safe and we are sincerely sorry for the disruption this is causing. Please contact your airline for information on how this may affect your flight."

LADbible has reached out to Alisha for further comment.

Featured Image Credit: TikTok/@alisha.syk

Topics: UK News, News, Travel, TikTok