Transport secretary to see Nats’ ATC meltdown report next week

The transport secretary Mark Harper will see a report from Nats next week after the air traffic control provider’s preliminary investigation into the systems failure that caused bank holiday travel chaos.

The IT glitch on August 28 has wrecked the travel plans of about 250,000 people this week, with the cost to airlines estimated by Iata to top £100 million.

Martin Rolfe, Nats chief executive, said two days later: “Initial investigations into the problem show it relates to some of the flight data we received.”

Harper chaired a second meeting about the widespread disruption this afternoon (September 1), with Nats, the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), airlines, airports, trade bodies and Border Force.

Nats is currently investigating the technical failure and a report will be sent to the CAA on Monday (September 4) and shared with Harper shortly afterwards.

The findings will be published by the CAA later in the week.

“On Monday, the CAA will receive Nats’ initial report into the incident, which the aviation minister and I will study with interest. Any next steps will be set out after the initial findings are published later in the week,” said Harper after the meeting.

“All parties are working hard to understand the incident and make sure passengers don’t face this kind of disruption again, and I will be supporting them in this effort.”

He commented: “Airlines have reported that most customers affected by Monday’s air traffic control failure have reached their destinations and I’m grateful for the steps taken by the industry to help make this happen.

“The government continues to support those efforts in any way we can.”

More: EasyJet boss demands independent review into air traffic control failure

Nats meltdown prompts call for overhaul of compensation rules

Flight data received by Nats caused air traffic shutdown

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