London: Gatwick Airport chaos, flights stopped after drones are spotted over the airfield
BREAKING: Flights to and from one of Britain’s busiest airports have been stopped – due to two drones near the runway.
London’s Gatwick Airport shut down late Wednesday while officials urgently investigated reports that two drones were flying above the airfield. The airport suspended all flights, causing severe disruptions just days before Christmas during one of the heaviest travel times of the year.
Police and aviation authorities were still investigating early Thursday as incoming flights were diverted to other locations.
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Passengers heading for London were forced to land as far away as Paris as 24 flights were disrupted across Europe. Others were diverted to Amsterdam, Cardiff, Liverpool, Manchester, Birmingham, Stansted, and Luton.
A police helicopter was deployed to track down the two drones and their operators.
The airport tweeted: “Following reports of two drones flying over the Gatwick Airport airfield, we have had to suspend flights while this is investigated.
We advise flying from Gatwick or collecting someone from the airport on Wednesday, December 19 and Thursday, December 20, to check their flight.
“We apologise to any affected passengers for this inconvenience but safety is our foremost priority.”