IAG blames human error for outage

Eleanor Steed
By Eleanor Steed June 6, 2017 11:32

IAG blames human error for outage

Willie Walsh, chief executive of International Airlines Group (IAG), parent of British Airways, has stated that the computer system outage last week was caused by human error. An engineer had inadvertently switched off the power supply to one of the company data centres and it was then turned back on again in an uncontrolled fashion.

“It’s very clear to me that you can make a mistake in disconnecting the power,” said Walsh at the IATA conference in Mexico. “It’s difficult for me to understand how to make a mistake in reconnecting the power.”

Walsh added that if the power was turned on again in an uncontrolled manner, the shutdown “was a problem that we could have overcome probably in a couple of hours; I don’t think it would have led to any cancellations.”

On 27 May, British Airways was affected by a power failure leading to severe disruption to flights. The airline cancelled 479 flights (59 per cent of operations) on that day and 193 flights (23 per cent of operations) on 28 May. By 29 May, the airline was flying the vast majority of its schedule.

Walsh has also denied claims that cost cutting moves may have caused the outage, saying there was no correlation between the two, adding that if those cuts had not been made the airline would not be in business today.

An internal investigation into the cause of the shutdown is ongoing and Walsh has promised full disclosure of the results once completed. IAG stated today that British Airways is “working hard to compensate affected passengers as quickly as possible.”

Eleanor Steed
By Eleanor Steed June 6, 2017 11:32