The air authorities of the United States lifted the suspension of operations of domestic flights after a failure of the systems that forced the planes to be grounded.
“The normal operation of air traffic in the United States is gradually resuming,” said the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on Twitter, adding that “we are continuing to investigate the cause of the initial issue.”
Update 5: Normal air traffic operations are resuming gradually across the U.S. following an overnight outage to the Notice to Air Missions system that provides safety info to flight crews. The ground stop has been lifted.
We continue to look into the cause of the initial problem— The FAA ✈️ (@FAANews) January 11, 2023
The FAA suspended all domestic flight departures on Wednesday until 14:00 GMT, in order to repair a failure that affected its information systems for pilots and crew, a statement said.
White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre said on Twitter that at the moment there were “no signs of a cyberattack.”
However, the President of the United States Joe Biden “requested the Department of Transportation to conduct a full investigation into the causes” of the incident, it said.
“The FAA continues to work to fully restore the (air…) information system following the outage,” the agency said, adding: “While some functions are beginning to come back online, domestic air system operations continue being limited.”
Thousands of delayed flights
Several airports in North America, including those in Ottawa, Baltimore and Austin, warned of delays and asked users to check the status of their flight before going to the airport.
United Airlines, for its part, confirmed in a statement that it had “temporarily delayed all domestic flights” due to the breakdown.
We are monitoring the situation closely and working with the FAA to minimize disruption to customers,” American Airlines also said in a statement.
The system affected by the interruption, called Notice To Air Missions (Notam to Air Missions, NOTAM), is used to transmit information to crews about risks, developments at airports and other relevant data.
The FAA said the system’s operation was “impaired.”
There were at least 3,578 flights delayed as of 8:00 a.m. Eastern Time (1:00 p.m. GMT), according to flight-tracking website Flight Aware. The number of delays related to the outage was not clear.
Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said on Twitter that he was “in contact with the FAA” about “this outage affecting a key system for providing safety information to pilots.”
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