The Latest: Delays, cancelations still expected at Gatwick

LONDON (AP) — The Latest on disruption at London’s Gatwick Airport caused by drones (all times local):

2:35 a.m.

UK police say two people have been arrested for suspected “criminal use of drones” in the Gatwick Airport case.

Sussex police said early Saturday morning the two arrests were made at around 10 p.m. Friday night.

Police did not release the age or gender of the two suspects and did not say where the arrests were made. The two have not been charged.

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Police have been searching for the drone operators since drones first appeared above the busy airport south of central London on Wednesday evening.

Tens of thousands of travelers were stranded or delayed by the prolonged shutdown of the airport due to safety concerns. 

Flights resumed Friday morning except for a 70-minute hiatus when they were shut down after a drone was spotted Friday evening.

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9:35 p.m.

New drone sightings have caused fresh chaos for holiday travelers at London’s Gatwick Airport.

The airport, which reopened Friday morning after a 36-hour shutdown, had to hastily suspend flights for more than an hour in the late afternoon on one of the busiest travel days of the year.

The reopening, closing and re-reopening of Britain’s second-busiest airport due to repeated drone sightings has raised a host of questions for British officials. Those included how safe is it to fly with drones around and why can’t the country’s police, military and aviation experts catch those responsible since they have been investigating the drone invasions since Wednesday night.

Tens of thousands of travelers have been stranded or delayed due to the persistent drone crisis at Gatwick, located 30 miles (45 kilometers) south of London

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6:50 p.m.

London’s Gatwick Airport says flights have resumed after a temporary shutdown due to a drone sighting.

The airport said in a statement Friday evening that “military measures” in place at Britain’s second-busiest airport made it safe to resume flight operations.

It says takeoffs and landings had been suspended earlier Friday — for roughly 80 minutes — as a precautionary measure while an investigation was underway.

An airport spokeswoman said there had been “a confirmed sighting of a drone.”

Drone sightings had also shut down the airport on Wednesday night and all day Thursday.

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5:35 p.m.

An airport spokeswoman says flights at London’s Gatwick Airport have been suspended again because of a “suspected drone sighting.”

The shutdown came roughly 11 hours after flights had resumed Friday morning at Britain’s second-busiest airport.

British Police and transport officials had said that extra security measures had been put in place to prevent drones from intruding on the airport.

Flights at Gatwick, which serves over 43 million passengers a year, had been shut down all of Thursday and for several hours Wednesday evening due to drone sightings.

The shutdowns have caused chaos over the holiday period.

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9:15 a.m.

London’s Gatwick Airport says the travelers should expect “knock-on delays and cancellations to flights” despite the reopening of the runway following about 36 hours of chaos caused by drones flying near the airfield.

The airport has said in a new statement “If you are due to travel from Gatwick today, we strongly recommend that you check the status of your flight with your airline before departing for the airport.

The prospect of a deadly collision between what police described as industrial-grade drones and an airliner led authorities to stop all flights in and out of Gatwick, Britain’s second-busiest airport by passenger numbers, on Thursday. The drones were first spotted Wednesday evening.

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7:10 a.m.

London’s Gatwick Airport says flights are resuming after drones sparked the shutdown of the airfield for about 36 hours, leaving tens of thousands of passengers stranded during the busy holiday season.

The airport said in a statement Friday morning that “Gatwick’s runway is currently available and a limited number of aircraft are scheduled for departure and arrival.”

But the statement urged passengers to check flight status before going to the airport “as departures and arrivals will be subject to delays and cancellations.”

The prospect of a deadly collision between what police described as industrial-grade drones and an airliner led authorities to stop all flights in and out of Gatwick, Britain’s second-busiest airport by passenger numbers, on Thursday. The drones were first spotted Wednesday evening.

The Western Journal has not reviewed this Associated Press story prior to publication. Therefore, it may contain editorial bias or may in some other way not meet our normal editorial standards. It is provided to our readers as a service from The Western Journal.

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