LONDON – As the UK now starts to recover from one of its worst storms in over 30 years, we are starting to gather data on the numbers of flights that were affected by the storm, with some flights being diverted due to the weather to destinations over 800 miles away.
Ryanair flight FR3806 flight due to land at Manchester airport on Friday on its regular service from Fuerteventura airport but was unable to land due to the weather, with the flight then diverting to Bordeaux on the west coast of France 850 miles away as it flew south to get away from the weather.
It wasn’t the only flight that caught the attention of avid avgeeks around the world, with British Airways also diverting a Boeing 787-10 service from Chicago due to land at Heathrow to Zurich following strong gusting winds making an approach not possible.
Data suggests that around 436 flights due to land or take off in the UK were canceled on Friday, causing major disruptions for travelers around the globe, particularly with Londons Heathrow, which saw around a fifth of all of its services canceled.
On Friday a Manchester Airport spokesman said: “Manchester Airport continues to operate as normal, and we will monitor the situation throughout the afternoon and evening.
“A number of airlines have preemptively canceled or rearranged their flights today for a variety of reasons. As always, we advise passengers to stay in contact with their airline for the most up-to-date status of their flight.
“We are also strongly encouraging passengers to allow extra time for their journey to the airport today, and throughout the weekend, given the likelihood of ongoing disruption, including on-road and rail networks.”
easyJet was also in the news, as one of the flights EJU8014 part of easyJet Europe, took off from Bordeaux bound for London Gatwick, was unable to make a landing in either of its two approaches, before it then entered the hold shortly before the crew made the decision to return to Bordeaux, with the flight landing back at the french city just 3 hours after it had first left.
Under EU compensation laws all airlines which canceled or delayed flights over 3 hours need to provide passengers with compensation for the delays and also provide food and accommodation vouchers free of charge, it is not yet clear of the cost of the weather delays and cancelations will have on the airlines, however, after two hard years of travel restrictions and increasing spending cuts to survive, the weather on Friday will have been an unwelcome addition for many airlines are they continue to rebuild from the COVID-19 pandemic costs.