U.S. Flights Delayed Due to Computer Glitch

A glitch in the computer system that processes U.S. flight plan data was causing delays in the United States but there were no safety issues, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said on Thursday.

The problem, which occurred in the Atlanta-based computer system that provides data about flight plans, has forced air controllers to input the information manually, said Arlene Salac, an FAA spokeswoman in New York.

“There are not any safety concerns or safety issues,” said Salac, adding that the problem started at around 5 a.m. “We will see some delays because of this …. Something that’s automated through the computer is being done manually.”

AirTran Airways, a subsidiary of AirTran Holdings, said 38 flights were canceled and dozens more were delayed nationwide because of the problem as of 9 a.m. local time, according to spokesman Christopher White.

“We expect this outage to have a ripple effect on flights throughout the day,” White said.

Delta Air Lines, the world’s largest airline, was experiencing U.S. flight delays and cancellations, said spokeswoman Susan Elliott, who did not offer specific numbers.

“Radars are working and radios are working so we can communicate with aircraft as normal,” said Paul Takemoto, an FAA spokesman in Washington.

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