For the second time in two months technology proved to be a formidable foe for major U.S. airlines; this time grounding all United Airlines flights for a short period on Tuesday.
Bloomberg reports that automation issues led the Chicago-based airline to stop thousands of flights from taking off for about an hour on Tuesday morning.
United said in an emailed statement that it began “delaying flights at approximately 8 a.m. CST to ensure aircraft departed with proper dispatch information.”
A notice on the Federal Aviation Administration website shows that the airline’s stoppage covered “all UAL main line flights from all destinations to all destinations.” Flights already in the air were not affected by the issue.
The stoppage was canceled by the FAA just before 9 a.m. and United said it was working to accommodate passengers who were affected by the delays.
A technological glitch was also to blame for delaying about two dozen American Airlines flights in April.
The airline blamed the delays on an issue with the navigation software application on the iPads pilots use to receive flight plans and other information crucial to flying.
According to Bloomberg, today’s stoppage is just the latest computer automation issue United has faced since its 2010 merger with Continental Airlines.
For about three hours in February 2014, the airline’s system tasked with handling check-ins and other serviced failed at United hubs in San Francisco, Washington and Chicago. Before that, pilots were stranded because of a malfunction which resulted in nearly 1,500 cancellations, Bloomberg reports.