After cancelling hundreds of flights yesterday and upsetting the holiday schedule of thousands of passengers, Gatwick’s runway has today reopened, but with limited service.
The airport said “additional mitigating measures” put in place by the police and military were allowing planes to fly again, although at least 100 of the 753 scheduled flights on Friday were set to be cancelled, with planes and crews out of place, and many have already been delayed.
The first arrival from China landed at about 6am today and the first departure, a Norwegian Airlines flight to Lapland, took off soon after.
✅ Gatwick Airport has reopened following reports of #drones flying near to the area
✈️ We advise not to travel without checking your flight status first
🎫 We’ve made the following arrangements to help get you on the move without further hassle
— Gatwick Express (@GatwickExpress) December 21, 2018
Meanwhile, he operator of the drone or drones has yet to be discovered, but no further sightings have been recorded since late yesterday, the airport added.
The transport secretary, Chris Grayling, who yesterday claimed that “substantial drones” had caused the chaos, today admitted that it was uncertain if there was more than one.
Grayling further told the BBC that it was “a new kind of attack” and that the perpetrator would face a substantial jail sentence. He said it was “unlikely to be” the action of a foreign state, but wasn’t was not ruling anything out.