FAA Computer Failure Impacts Flights Nationwide, Including Maine
UPDATE: 9 AM
Flights have resumed, but travelers were warned to expect delays throughout the day.
Original story follows...
Just as people were starting to recover from, and forget, the flight backups that happened over the Christmas Holiday, we are getting word that an FAA computer failure is causing more trouble for flyers.
According to an article on WMTW, NOTAM, the Federal Aviation Administration computer system that transmits warnings about hazards to airliners, was having issues. NOTAM, for those who do not know, is an acronym for Notice To Air Missions. "Air Missions" is their way of referring to flights.
The FAA made released a statement about the issue:
THE FAA is experiencing an outage that is impacting the update of NOTAMS. All flights are unable to be released at this time
The computer problem was expected to cause flight delays nationwide, including here in Maine.
At 6:30, they made an announcement that they had reloaded the software and were doing final checks. At 7:00 AM, they announced that some functions were coming back online. Then, just before 7:30 AM, the FAA announced that they were pausing flights until 9 AM.
The posts seem to indicate that all commercial flights, including those at Bangor International Airport, Augusta Regional Airport, and Portland Jetport, will be affected. It is suggested that anyone who is supposed to fly today double check the status of their flight and adjust their plans accordingly.
Of course, it is important to remember that any time we see a delay of this magnitude, it has a ripple effect. Just because your flight is scheduled for after the time the computer comes back online, it does not mean it will not be delayed. Even after the systems come back online, airports will need time to deal with the backup before resuming normal operations.