A widespread computer glitch delayed many flights of United Airlines (NYSE:UAL) on Thursday, stranding hundreds of passengers in many airports. Many of their planes were delayed by several hours, and as a result, the passengers were forced to overstay at airports and reschedule their travel plans.
United is the world’s third-biggest airline business, after Delta (NYSE:DAL) and American. The two businesses, United Airlines and Continental Airlines merged some time back to form the company United Continental Holdings Inc.
A United Airlines release said that the problem was caused because of an error in their weight reporting system. Naturally, the planes could not take off, as there was no accurate data of the weight the passengers were carrying.
The issue was, however, resolved soon. But by then, it had already caused the delays, leading to the airports getting jammed with travelers. United offered an apology, saying sorry for the inconveniences caused, and said that the delayed flights will be resuming soon. The company tweet came out a little after 3 am, Eastern Time.
Angry Passengers Pour It Out Against United
Unhappy passengers of United Airlines took to the social media for venting out their frustrations as well. One person tweeted, saying, “Hey @united, I’ve been stuck on the tarmac for 2 hours on flight UA 732”. Another person said that United was living in the 1990s as a single glitch grounded their entire fleet.
United, however, did not provide any details on how bad these delays were, and whether it would have any knock-out effect on the company’s network.
Meanwhile, hundreds of other flights were delayed as well because of a computer systems meltdown, including the United (NYSE:UAL) flights worldwide. There were fears of a cyber attack on many leading airline companies that could not be overlooked.
Computer Problems Force Delays With Other Airlines Too
But United Airlines is not alone. British Airways too had a similar computer problem last month that delayed many of their flights to several destinations in Europe and the United States. There were long lines in many airports. Southwest Airlines too had to cancel more than 1,000 flights.
Then last August, the world’s largest airline company, Delta suffered a worldwide systems failure. Hundreds of their flights had to be canceled. Thousands got delayed. A power problem was blamed for these delays and cancellations. A Delta spokesperson denied that their system was breached. However, cyber security experts were not that sure.