FAA works to restore system as flight departures halted
NEW YORK (AP) — A computer outage at the FAA brought flights to a standstill across the U.S. on Wednesday, with hundreds of delays quickly cascading through the system at airports nationwide.
The FAA ordered all U.S. flights to delay departures until 9 a.m. Eastern, though airlines said they were aware of the situation and had already begun grounding flights.
At 7 a.m. Eastern, there were more than 1,200 delayed flights within, into or out of the U.S., according to the flight tracking website FlightAware.
Most delays were concentrated along the East Coast and airlines said that they were aware of the situation and beginning to suspend flights.
The agency said it was working on restoring its Notice to Air Missions System, or Notams.
“We are performing final validation checks and reloading the system now,” the FAA said. “Operations across the National Airspace System are affected.”
The agency said that some functions are beginning to come back on line, but that “National Airspace System operations remain limited.”
United Airlines said that it had temporarily delayed all domestic flights and would issue an update once it learned more from the FAA.
The FAA is working to restore what is known as the Notice to Air Missions System.
Notams used to be available through a hotline, but that was phased out with the internet. The alerts span from mundane information about construction at airports to urgent flight restrictions or broken equipment.
This report was published by the Associated Press.
UPDATED: This report was updated at 8 a.m. Eastern time to say that the FAA had ordered airlines to delay all departures until 9 a.m. Eastern time.
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