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BA delays at LHR - Computer issue

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BA delays at LHR - Computer issue

Old 30th May 2017, 17:08
  #361 (permalink)  
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I suspect there is still the 4 day a week management culture operating (there was apparently one at Land Rover until the new Indian owners shook things)...... only relatively junior staff were present and the SO's weren't so much hiding as away in Paris, or Madrid, or their Cotswold retreat or on a boat at Cowes..... I suspect the Monaco Grand Prix was also a spot you'd find some.......... and of ocurse they couldn't get back from overseas because...........

You can talk all you like about managing a fast moving crisis by modern comms but it doesn't work - you need the movers and shakers around a table and not sitting on the end of a dodgy phone connection waiting for a chance to butt in to a conference call..............
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Old 30th May 2017, 17:36
  #362 (permalink)  
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If this is the calibre of senior management at BA then they deserve to fail
If the top brass are no good, the rest will follow. And the top brass are no good, and have not been for a long time. The company is a car crash in progress, and if anyone who thinks that their operational and maintenance standards are not going downhill fast with the rest of the outfit needs a reality check.

At the risk of being repetitive, why are they still allowed to call it "British"? It is not, and has not been since IAG was created.
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Old 30th May 2017, 18:21
  #363 (permalink)  
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British Airways compensation: Airline agrees to cover cost of flights and claims under EU rules after IT system failure | The Independent
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Old 30th May 2017, 18:40
  #364 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Freehills View Post
Survivorship bias. We think Victorian engineers built well, because the stuff that still stands was obviously built well. The shitty back to backs, bridges etc. that fell down or needed to be replaced, you don't see anymore.
Story is that when some girders from the Clifton Suspension Bridge were replaced, it being felt the originals had been there long enough, on testing the originals were found to be rather stronger than the modern replacements that had just been put in.
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Old 30th May 2017, 18:56
  #365 (permalink)  
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>If this is the calibre of senior management at BA then they deserve to fail.<

Does anyone nowadays doubt that the Peter Principle has been proved beyond reasonable doubt to be true? I can't off-hand think of any large company that has enlightened and capable management -- I certainly never came across any in my consulting days -- and it isn't necessary to look very closely for it to be horribly obvious that none of the emperors have any clothes.

Perhaps an even bigger mystery is why society at large allows the situation to persist.
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Old 30th May 2017, 18:59
  #366 (permalink)  
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Exclusive: BA boss given vote of confidence by Willie Walsh as full details of IT meltdown revealed

Willie gives a vote of confidence to Mr Cruz and it was all caused by power coming back in an uncontrolled manner - apparently.
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Old 30th May 2017, 19:05
  #367 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by WHBM View Post
So where's the Rt Hon Mr Grayling then ?
Don't laugh but the airline industry isn't as regulated as Financial Services. Yes, I know the maintenance and safety side is regulated but the consumer side less so, mainly as in my view its a simple product; you pay, we take you and we get you there 999% of the time. As for Chris Grayling, he is MP for Epsom & Ewell, which is a very safe Conservative seat. No need to do an awful lot of campaigning with a majority of over 24,000 at the last election.
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Old 30th May 2017, 19:08
  #368 (permalink)  
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If there is a silver lining to this IT cloud, next time ATC has an outage it can tell its major shareholder BA that at least it was only a couple of hours disruption to some BA flights, unlike their more than one day disruption to all their flights due to their IT. Indeed I can think of an ATC firm who could offer some consultancy in high integrity IT to BA/IAG.

What happened to Iberia in all this? Were they immune from this BA problem?
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Old 30th May 2017, 19:23
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This current BA fiasco brings back a very unpleasant memory following a previous slashing of UK IT staff and contractors at BA and outsourcing to Indians who were, if I recall correctly, brought here to the UK but were paid at lowly local Indian rates:

BA IT Director in Suicide Leap After Lay-Offs - IT Contractor & IT Contracting News & Advice

It may have no impact upon what has occurred on this occasion but I found that there is also a cultural issue with Indians who will insist things are fine when they're not! It can take quite persistent questioning to get behind the "Everything is tickety-boo" facade.
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Old 30th May 2017, 19:24
  #370 (permalink)  
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The link says "On Saturday morning, shortly after 8.30am, power to Boadicea House through its UPS was shut down - the reasons for which are not yet known.

Under normal circumstances, power would have been returned to the servers in Boadicea House slowly, allowing the airline’s other Heathrow data centre, at Comet House, to take up some of the slack.

But, on Saturday morning, just minutes after the UPS went down, power was resumed in what one source described as “uncontrolled fashion.” “It should have been gradual,” the source went on."
Sounds awfully like maintainer error to me with the poor guy operating all the wrong switches when he/she realized he/she had turned off the wrong switch or the UPS failed. Not uncommon.

Does not explain why Comet House did not take over anyway. What happens if something catastrophic like a fire or flood happens to Boadicea House as they seem to be saying Comet House only takes over some of it under some controlled circumstances? That is not a proper backup.
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Old 30th May 2017, 19:36
  #371 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by DaveReidUK View Post
You might want to check out the meaning of "force majeure".
You might want to explain your reasoning!
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Old 30th May 2017, 19:43
  #372 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Ian W View Post
On the contrary take BA to the small claims court if you are not covered by insurance. I would think that the claim could be uncontested. If everyone affected from UK were to go to their small claims court it would have a salutary (and expensive) effect on BA. Look it up on the internet - it is a simple procedure that doesn't normally require legal assistance. https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/la.../small-claims/
A very good point. Firms are obliged to respond to Small Claims Court claims. It will provoke a response from BA as they won't want to send a Legal Team to the local Magistrates in Any Town and your claim will go to the top of the queue internally.

Anyway, I think I've made often contributions on this thread. May wish any claimants all the best with their claims against BA for lost luggage, lost holidays and lost patience....
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Old 30th May 2017, 20:27
  #373 (permalink)  
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In a machine room from my past, that no longer exists, a security guard groped for the light switch and powered down the research data center using the emergency switch despite its switch cover - rather obviously the lights did not come on although several smaller ones went off . So the guard groped further and found the light switch and realized that the wrong switch had been used so switched it back on again and went on his way not realizing the chaos caused by the few minutes interruption and uncontrolled restoration.

This sounds like a similar occurrence.
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Old 30th May 2017, 20:33
  #374 (permalink)  
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I don't know if I'd put much store by this article. Unless they've built one recently Comet House was demolished many years ago. Cranebank was the 2nd datacentre site when I worked for BA. I'd suggest reading Bill Francis's entry in this document to see how IT staff at BA were viewed.

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Old 30th May 2017, 20:56
  #375 (permalink)  
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For those that have not read the entire thread, we have had confirmation that the IAG Group Head of IT is not an IT person, this from Caribbean Boy:
Alex Cruz has nobody responsible for IT reporting to him. All of BA's IT was moved to its owner IAG, the person in charge is Bill Francis, Head of Group IT. Francis reports to Ignacio de Torres Zabala, Director of Global Services, who in turn reports to Willie Walsh, Chief Executive of IAG.

Walsh has amongst his direct reports Cruz and Zabala, but not Francis. It may be relevant that Francis is not an IT man - he is perhaps best known for being in charge of cabin crew.
Therefore, IT (on which the entire IAG rests) are not represented at Board level.
Will be glad to be corrected that an international group, utterly reliant on IT for every single action, has understood the importance of IT.
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Old 30th May 2017, 20:59
  #376 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by wiggy View Post

It does apply to airlines.

If the airline makes the decision to transfer passengers to another operator then the airline pays, I've certainly known it happen at BA if for example an aircraft goes "tech". Sounds similar to the ferry situation you describe.

If OTOH a passengers decide that rather than waiting for the original airline come up with a reasonable solution that resolves the problem ( e.g. put them on a later flight) they'd rather make alternative arrangements with another operator I suspect legally the situation is different - though I fully understand why there might be good and understable reasons for passengers taking that course of action.
Trouble is, that causes even more problems and gives more freedom for the guilty airlines to mess around their customers.

Last month the daughter was due to fly AA LHR > DFW > AUS. By the way, AA because the BA direct flight was full in Y class although that might change in the future given this weekend. She was going to Austin to give a lecture to a Global Conference - £3,500 fee, travel costs up to her.

Anyway, at 06.30 on the day of departure, she received a sms from AA saying her flight was cancelled and to call AA reservations. A quick check on FR24 showed the inbound flight had diverted back to DFW from somewhere over Illinois, presumably tech problems. She called, and AA rebooked her on a BA flight to ORD with a 90 minutes connecting time to AUS. No problem, she assumed, I'll be at AUS a bit later than planned, and although I'll miss the Welcome Cocktail Party on Wednesday evening,at least I'll be there for Thursday morning's Conference opening.

The BA flight left LHR 90 minutes late, and arrived 90 minutes late at ORD, around 20.10, the scheduled time for her AA connection to AUS. No problem, she assumed, I'll be roomed overnight, fed and watered by BA or AA and an early morning flight to Austin and I'll only be a couple of hours late for the Conference opening and in time to give her speech on the Thursday afternoon.

Well, would you know, AA only have two flights per day ORD > AUS, and the morning flight was already full and overbooked. The only offer from BA was the 20.10 flight, which she took, eventually arriving in AUS almost 36 hours late.

Result ? She lost her £3,500 fee and incurred about £1,300 flight and hotel costs.

Since then, she's been knocked backwards and forwards by both AA and BA in trying to reclaim her lost fee and expenses - AA have offered her standard EU compensation for her cancelled LHR > DFW flight, but insist her beef should be with BA who caused her missed connection in ORD. BA say they have no duty to reimburse her anything because her LHR flight to ORD was only 90 minutes late and so inside the 120 mintes EU cut-off, and they roomed, fed and watered her at ORD.

Having spent 20-odd years bitching about sleezy ambulance chasing lawyers and, more recently, reading about the PPI spivs in the UK, I've now advised her to contact one of the numerous 'Was your flight delayed' touts, which, hopefully, will cost both AA and BA more than she actually lost in fees and expenses. They've both had their chance to be reasonable, even if not generous, and I hope she screws them both.
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Old 30th May 2017, 21:06
  #377 (permalink)  
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Under normal circumstances, power would have been returned to the servers in Boadicea House slowly, allowing the airline’s other Heathrow data centre, at Comet House, to take up some of the slack.
Wasn't Comet House pulled down years ago?
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Old 30th May 2017, 21:06
  #378 (permalink)  
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Comet House

I recall when Comet House was home to BA Press Office (and asbestos). The nearest thing they had to technology was a top loading VCR. Given the scale of the recent failure, nothing much has changed..
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Old 30th May 2017, 22:15
  #379 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Tay Cough View Post
Wasn't Comet House pulled down years ago?
Yes, and Speedbird House (next to TBA if memory serves me right) in 1998.
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Old 30th May 2017, 22:27
  #380 (permalink)  
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Maybe that's the problem.
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