How long will flight disruption from the air traffic control fault last?

The disruption, which has been described as the worst of its kind in 'nearly a decade', originally started on Bank Holiday Monday.

Holidaymakers have seen their travel plans thrown into disarray after an air traffic control technical fault grounded flights into and out of the UK.

The disruption, which has been described as the worst of its kind in “nearly a decade”, originally started on Bank Holiday Monday.

Issues have continued to affect airports into Tuesday and concerns are growing over how much longer they could persist. So, when will a resolution be reached?

How long will the disruption last for?

Currently, it is unclear when flight schedules will return to normal.

National Air Traffic Services (Nats), the country’s leading provider of air traffic control, and some of the UK’s largest airports have not given a definitive timescale, instead saying it will take “some time for flights to return to normal”.

Speaking on Monday, Juliet Kennedy, operations director at Nats, said teams “will continue to work with the airlines and the airports to recover the situation”, adding: “Our absolute priority is safety and we will be investigating very thoroughly what happened today.”

The UK’s largest airport, Heathrow, said in a statement posted on X, formerly known as Twitter, that “schedules remain significantly disrupted”.

Gatwick Airport, meanwhile, has said it plans to operate a “normal schedule” on Tuesday, although it’s advising passengers to “check the status of their flight” before travelling to the airport.

And London Stanstead has issued similar guidance, telling passengers its terminal “may be busier than expected” on Tuesday.

What caused the disruption?

The disruption has been blamed on a “technical fault”, which Nats said was “identified and remedied” on Monday at 3.15pm.

Transport Secretary Mark Harper said an “independent review” will take place in the “coming days” to identify any lessons that can be learned from the saga.

He added the issue was not the result of a cyber attack, speaking to GB News.

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