Home U.K. Heathrow Airport chaos: Flights diverted as RAF operation prevents planes landing

Heathrow Airport chaos: Flights diverted as RAF operation prevents planes landing

Aviation news source Airlive had earlier tweeted: “Many planes are holding on approach to London Heathrow. It looks like landings were suspended for a while.” Panicked passengers took to Twitter to ask what was happening at Heathrow Airport. One said a British Airways flight appeared to have been diverted to nearby Stansted.

They wrote: “@HeathrowAirport Stacking all over London this morning, something happened?

“BA771 appears to be diverting to Stansted?”

Another Twitter user, who appears to be on a flight due to land at Heathrow, said there has been a “security incident”.

He wrote: “Captain said Heathrow is closed for arrivals for a “security incident”.

Landings have been suspended at Heathrow, with several flights being diverted (Image: GETTY)

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Flights could not land at Heathrow for a short space of time (Image: GETTY)

“What’s going on?”

One passenger tweeted they have now been cleared to land at Heathrow, but added the pilot had said arrivals into the airport were being restricted “to allow a plane with a security incident on board to land”.

The passenger wrote: “I’m on one of the few planes that were now cleared for landing.

“Our pilot just informed us that they’re restricting arrivals to allow a plane with a security incident on board to land.

Several flights were diverted to nearby airports (Image: GETTY)

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Another frustrated passenger tweeted: “Got diverted with British Airways BA771 from Stockholm to Stansted. Still on the ground and waiting for info.

“Seems like there is two options right now, refuel and get back to Heathrow or bus to London!”

But Heathrow confirmed arrivals into the airport were temporarily suspended due to a request from the RAF to fly through nearby airspace. 

A spokesperson said: “Arrivals were paused briefly this morning due to an RAF request for an operational flight within part of Heathrow’s airspace.

“Arrivals are now operating as normal.”

Baggage allowances for major airlines (Image: EXPRESS)

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The RAF confirmed one of their flights was completed from RaF Northholt this morning and coordinated with Heathrow but that it had to be extended bay a few minutes.

It added in a statement: “The minor delays caused to civilian air traffic are regretted.”

Heathrow is the second busiest airport in the world by international passenger traffic.

It is also the busiest airport in Europe by passenger traffic, and the seventh busiest airport in the world by total passenger traffic.

In 2018, Heathrow handled a record 80.1 million passengers – up 2.7 percent from 2018 as well 477,604 aircraft movements, an increase of 1,821 from the year before.

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