Economy

Departures suspended at Heathrow after drone sighting

Departures suspended at Heathrow after drone sighting

Gatwick and Heathrow officials have pledge to invest in anti-drone technology, with United Kingdom transport secretary Chris Grayling saying to Parliament on Monday to extend drone exclusion zones near United Kingdom airports.

"We are responding to a drone sighting at Heathrow", the airport said. She said: "It is crucial that our plans maximise the benefits of expansion across the country, including for the communities closest to us".

'We apologise to passengers for any inconvenience this may cause'.

London's Heathrow Airport, Europe's busiest hub in terms of passenger numbers, said it has suspended all departing flights on Tuesday following a drone sighting.

It comes just weeks after drone sightings at Gatwick grounded planes for several days over the Christmas period.

"We've been sitting on the runway at Heathrow for like an hour and a half", another person said.

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"As a precautionary measure, Heathrow Airport has stopped departures and officers based at Heathrow are now investigating the reports with colleagues from airport".

Britain will expand drone exclusion zones around airports from the current 1km to three miles (about 5km), after drones near Gatwick airport cancelled about 1000 flights.

Scotland Yard said they received reports of a drone "in the vicinity of Heathrow Airport" just after 5pm. More than 140,000 passengers had their flights disrupted and more than 1,000 flights were affected between December 19th and December 21st 2019.

The Transport Secretary is also planning to expand the no-fly zones around airports and prisons, amid fears that drones are increasingly being used to deliver drugs and other prohibited items to inmates.

The government's tonight said the military are preapred to depoy the same anti drone equipment that finally brought an end to the Gatwick chaos.

From November 30 this year, operators of drones weighing between 250g and 20kg will also have to register and take an online pilot competency test.


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