UK airport has to suspend flights because of ‘melting runway’

An airport in the UK has been forced to suspend flights. Not because of the supply chain issues, Covid-19 positive staff calling in sick, or increased fuel prices, but because the runway was suffering under the unseasonably high temperatures.

Train speed restrictions were also introduced in sections of the country to protect railway tracks against extreme heat.

Luton Airport, one of the largest airports in the UK, had to suspend flights last night after high temperatures damaged a runway. Airport officials said they identified a “surface defect” on the airport’s lone runway. Full operations eventually resumed just after 6pm, London time, after repairs were conducted.

The airport announced on Twitter…

“An essential runway repair was required after high surface temperatures caused a small section to lift.”

Temperatures topped 37 degrees Celsius in some parts of the country, on a day where forecasters predicted new records could be set for England’s usually mild summer. British weather officials issued a “red extreme” heat warning for the first time in large sections across England.

Earlier, the Royal Air Force had to suspend all flights to and from Brize Norton, its largest air base in Oxfordshire. A report on Sky News suggested that the runway was “melting.”

“During this period of extreme temperature flight safety remains the RAF’s top priority, so aircraft are using alternative airfields in line with a long-established plan. This means there is no impact on RAF operations.”

Yesterday, both Network Rail and Transport for London advised passengers against travelling on either Monday or Tuesday, unless for “essential journeys.”

Last week, the UK’s largest airport, Heathrow, announced a 100,000 a day passenger cap until September 11. It also asked airlines to stop selling any more seats this summer as it “struggles to deal with high demand and staffing shortages”.

London’s Gatwick airport has since issued a similar request to airlines.

World News

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Tim Newton

Tim joined The Thaiger as one of its first employees in 2018 as an English news writer/editor and then began to present The Thaiger's Daily news show in 2020, Thailand News Today (or TNT for short). He has lived in Thailand since 2011, having relocated from Australia.