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BA reveals cause of IT shut-down

02 June 2017 09:02

BA flights were heavily disrupted over the weekend

BA flights were heavily disrupted over the weekend

British Airways has revealed the cause of an IT shut-down which led to major flight disruption over the Bank Holiday weekend.

The airline indicated that the issues were the result of an "uncontrolled return of power" following an outage, with servers at its data centre physically damaged.

The announcement followed flight cancellations over the weekend, with thousands of people thought to have been impacted.

With the group unable to resume its full schedule until Tuesday (May 30), many of those caught up in the incident will likely be checking over their travel insurance policies.

Questions remain

Initially, the GMB union suggested that the IT problems might have been caused by the contracting of work out to India.

Chief executive Alex Cruz has confirmed that the outsourcing of jobs was not behind the "catastrophic" power failure.

While announcing the real cause of the problems, BA is yet to say what led to the initial power outage and subsequent surge.

Commenting in a statement, the airline said: " There was a loss of power to the UK data centre which was compounded by the uncontrolled return of power which caused a power surge taking out our IT systems. So we know what happened, we just need to find out why.

"It was not an IT failure and had nothing to do with outsourcing of IT, it was an electrical power supply which was interrupted. We are undertaking an exhaustive investigation to find out the exact circumstances and most importantly ensure that this can never happen again."

Cost implications

Experts have indicated that the carrier could face significant compensation costs, potentially running into many millions of pounds.

The group has already emphasised that all relevant European compensation rules will be followed, with extra staff added to its customer relations department.

On Saturday night, some passengers were forced to sleep on yoga mats at Heathrow and Gatwick, as BA flights were cancelled.

Anyone impacted by the weekend's disruption can call a freephone number set up by BA to discuss their issues. The number is 0800 727 800.