PPRuNe Forums - View Single Post - UK ATC issues today?
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Old 26th Jul 2019, 20:54
  #18 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: UK
Posts: 535
Originally Posted by Brian 48nav View Post

Have you ever visited one of the ATC facilities in London or Swanwick centre? Just asking!
Yes, both, incredibly interesting and useful.

3 weeks ago we had a failure of EFPS (again) and that ground LGW to a halt for a number of hours. I stand corrected about thunderstorms in NYC but madrid of all places managed quite well with one parked over the field for most of the day last week.

I wasn't having a go at NATS, just pointing out that it was a NATS issue this time. I was however having a go at the lack of infrastructure investment in the UK, whether that's airports, alternative radar feeds or ATM backup systems (eg the EFPS issue last month, surely it should be a well rehearsed scenario for ANS?). Though I do appreciate that LGW tower is no longer NATS, but I assume EFPS is a NATS inherited system.

I don't disagree that the controllers themselves do a fantastic job with their resources and I don't envy them on days like this, but surely with what is at stake, secondary and probably tertiary radar feeds on independent systems is a worthwhile investment. I'm not sure what they do have in the way of redundancy but I hope its a fair amount, although obviously it has let them down from a technical standpoint today. If passengers have to pay 20p a ticket more for the capital infrastructure costs then so be it. A few years ago, NATS themselves were saying they've been impossibly squeezed financially and lack the resources to deal with our demand and schedules.

I don't normally defend NATS but to say it happens a number of times a year is quite frankly rubbish and wrong.
Apologies, I didn't mean that a radar fails a number of times a year, but that we have some sort of ATM issue frequently. The final number was 82 cancelled services. Total number of passengers would be between 10 and 15 thousand, from one airline.
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