Flights across the United States resumed Wednesday after the Federal Aviation Administration suffered a computer glitch that forced him to halt all departures across the country as he rushed to resolve the issue.
The FAA announced that the ground stoppage had been lifted at around 8:50 a.m. and that normal air traffic operations were gradually resuming while it continued to investigate the cause of the problem. But delays and cancellations had already spread across the country after the agency said its Air Mission Notification, or NOTAM, system had “failed.”
More than 5,400 flights within, to and from the US were delayed around 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, according to the online flight tracker. informed flight. More than 940 flights were listed as cancelled.
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The FAA had said in a tweet just before 7:20 a.m. that it was directing airlines to pause all domestic departures until 9 a.m. ET “to allow the agency to validate the integrity of flight and safety information” while worked to restore the NOTAM system. .
In later updates, it said that all flights in the sky were safe to land on.
“Pilots check the NOTAM system before flying. An Air Mission Advisory alerts pilots to runway closures, equipment outages, and other potential hazards along a flight path or at a location that could affect flight,” the FAA said.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said in a cheep that there was “no evidence of a cyberattack at this time” adding that President Joe Biden had directed the Department of Transportation to conduct a full investigation into the causes. He added: “The FAA will provide regular updates.”
A senior law enforcement official told NBC News the FBI saw no evidence that a cyberattack caused the outage. Cyber security experts say that the most common cause of problems like this is a bad software update. However, the cause of Wednesday’s incident is still unclear.
“Today’s catastrophic FAA system failure is a clear sign that America’s transportation network is in desperate need of significant improvements,” US Travel Association President and CEO Geoff said Wednesday. Freeman. “Americans deserve an end-to-end travel experience that is safe and seamless. And our nation’s economy depends on a best-in-class air transportation system.
“We call on federal lawmakers to modernize our vital air travel infrastructure to ensure our systems can safely and efficiently meet demand,” he said.
Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said in a cheep that he had “been in contact with the FAA this morning about an outage that affected a key system for providing safety information to pilots.”
United Airlines previously said it had temporarily delayed all domestic flights. He said he would issue an update when he heard more from the FAA about the situation.
Southwest Airlines said it was “closely monitoring” the situation and that it “could affect the start of operations” on Wednesday.
“An FAA system outage is causing ground stops at AUS and other airports across the country,” Austin-Bergstrom International Airport said in a statement. cheep.
“Arriving and departing passengers can expect delays this morning and throughout the day,” he said, adding: “Keep in touch with your airline and check your flight status before heading to AUS.”
The news came after several social media users said they had been affected by the situation.
Heather Allen, 32, was set to fly from New York City to Seattle with her fiance to visit family on a delayed vacation visit. She was watching a movie of her on her plane and still on the tarmac at John F. Kennedy International Airport when she and other passengers were told to get off their Delta Airlines flight.
She said she found out about the outage by reading the news on Twitter and had been on the plane for about an hour before she had to deplane.
“Trying to be patient, but getting frustrated,” Allen said. She said the situation at the airport “wasn’t chaotic at the moment, but it could be if the delays were longer.”
The problem also appeared to have affected some flights to the US.
Several airports outside the US said operations were continuing as normal, but international airport operator Aéroports de Paris, or Paris Airports, said all US airline flights had been delayed. He said non-US airlines were flying as normal without interruption.
Air France said all of its US-bound flights were operating as planned and were not affected by the FAA computer outage. He said he was continuing to monitor the situation.
“As far as we know, we are still operating to/from the US at this time,” a spokesman for London’s Gatwick airport said.
A spokesman for Frankfurt airport in Germany said the FAA outage did not affect its operations.
This is a developing story. Please check for updates.
sara mahaidli, nancy Y austin mullen contributed.