British Airways says computer outage causing global delays

LONDON, ENGLAND - MARCH 19: A British Airways plane prepares to depart Heathrow Airport on March 19, 2010 in London, England. The planned three day strike by BA cabin crew this weekend will now go ahead as talks between the airline and the union Unite collapsed earlier today. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

LONDON — Air travelers faced delays Saturday because of a worldwide computer systems failure at British Airways, the airline said.

BA apologized in a statement for what it called an “IT systems outage” and said it was working to resolve the problem. It said in a tweet that the problem is global.

Passengers at Heathrow Airport reported long lines at check-in counters and flight delays. One posted a picture on Twitter of BA staff writing gate numbers on a white board.

“We’ve tried all of the self-check-in machines. None were working, apart from one,” said Terry Page, booked on a flight to Texas. “There was a huge queue for it and it later transpired that it didn’t actually work, but you didn’t discover that until you got to the front.”

Another traveler, PR executive Melissa Davis, said she was held for more than an hour and a half on the tarmac at Heathrow aboard a BA flight arriving from Belfast.

She said passengers had been told they could not transfer to other flights because “they can’t bring up our details.”

Heathrow said the IT problem had caused “some delays for passengers” and it was working with BA to resolve it.

The problem comes on a holiday weekend, when thousands of Britons are travelling.

BA passengers were hit with severe delays in July and September 2016 because of problems with the airline’s online check-in systems.