Gatwick cancels flights due to air traffic control staff shortages

Flights at Gatwick Airport were cancelled, delayed or diverted at short notice on Thursday 14th September 2023 due to a shortage of air traffic controllers.

Gatwick confirmed some cancellations, while the website FlightRadar24 said hundreds of flights in and out of the airport were delayed.

The National Air Traffic Services (Nats) apologised for its staffing shortages.

Gatwick Airport said it expected a normal service on Friday, 15th September 2023.

The disruption comes just over two weeks after a technical issue at Nats that led to 2,000 flights being cancelled across the UK.

EasyJet expressed frustration at Thursday’s delays and cancellations, while Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary called on Nats’ boss to resign.

Mr O’Leary reportedly said: ‘It is unacceptable that more flights and hundreds of passengers are suffering delays to/from Gatwick Airport due to Nats CEO, Martin Rolfe’s blatant failure to adequately staff UK ATC’.

‘Airlines are paying millions of pounds to Nats each and every year and should not have to see their passengers suffer avoidable delays due to UK ATC staff shortages’.


Gatwick Airport said it was ‘operating as normal’ on Friday after a shortage of air traffic controllers caused disruption to flights overnight on Thursday, 14th September 2023.

‘Frequent flyers… suckers!’

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