Carriers warn British government of potential for transport chaos
The top executives at four airlines have warned the British government that London’s airports could be overwhelmed by streams of passengers during this summer’s Olympic Games, unless action is not taken quickly. In a letter to the country’s transport ministry, British Airways, Virgin Atlantic, bmi and easyJet say that time is running out to deal with the anticipated surge in air traffic, risking the possibility of disruption and misery for many hundreds of thousands of travellers.
“As the situation currently stands, the industry believes that there is a significant risk of severe delay and disruption at all of London’s major airports unless urgent action is taken,” the letter reads. “Time is running out to ensure that any changes to procedures and the appropriate training are in place prior to the Games.”
The UK is the world’s sixth most visited country, and it expects a further 700,000 international travellers during the Games, which begin on July 27. Heathrow already operates at 99% of its capacity on an average day, while Gatwick runs at full capacity at peak times.