Thick fog blanketing the UK yesterday morning caused flights to be delayed and diverted at London’s Heathrow Airport as well as other key national airports. British Airways was forced into cancelling 50 short-haul flights landing and arriving at Heathrow. Departures affected were for locations such as Paris and Amsterdam.
The pilot of a BA flight from Sao Paulo in Brazil to Heathrow had to land in Glasgow due to the fog while an Air India service was diverted to Paris. Heathrow’s management issued an alert saying fog across much of Europe and the UK meant passengers should be prepared for delays to their flights.
In addition to Heathrow, passengers flying from London Gatwick, Leeds-Bradford and Liverpool airports experienced delays and disruption to their journeys. Although the fog had mostly cleared by lunchtime weather forecasters said they expected it to return this morning.
Passengers on delayed flights faced waits of at least one hour. Airlines were issuing advisories recommending that passengers checked the status of their flights prior to setting off for their departure airports. Airport officials said families coming back from half-term breaks would also add to the weather related problems yesterday and today.
EU rules state that passengers on flights delayed by extreme weather are entitled to a meal. In the case of long delays they should also be provided with complimentary accommodation. What passengers are not entitled to is any form of monetary compensation as adverse weather is not viewed as something that airlines have any control over.