Technical issue grounds flights at major German airports

Technical issue grounds flights at major German airports

As if staff shortages weren’t already causing enough issues at airports in Germany, a technical issue with air traffic control added to the chaos on Wednesday morning, restricting air traffic over large parts of Germany. The problem has now been fixed, but disruption continues. 

German air traffic control hit by software error

Deutsche Flugsicherung, the company in charge of air traffic control for Germany, announced on Wednesday morning that it had encountered a software problem when installing an update at its Langen control centre. 

The fault was eventually resolved and normal operations were allowed to resume from 9am, but for several hours air traffic in and out of German airports across the country was severely restricted. 

The Langen centre controls the lower airspace in central Germany, including important airports in Düsseldorf, Cologne and Frankfurt. Flights passing through German airspace at higher altitudes were not affected as they are monitored by controllers at a different centre. 

Disruption at German airports to continue throughout the day

However, Frankfurt airport operator Fraport said that the issue would cause knock-on disruption across the whole of Europe. Passengers travelling out of Frankfurt on Wednesday are already experiencing delays and isolated flight cancellations. Airport management recommended people check the status of their flights before travelling to the airport, and arrive in plenty of time. 

In the past few weeks, the lack of workers at airports in Germany and across Europe has led to chaotic scenes for travellers jetting off over the summer holidays, with long queues at check-in desks, security and passport control. 

Germany’s Federal Transport, Labour and Interior Ministers, Volker Wissing, Hubertus Heil and Nancy Faeser are due to present measures to remedy the situation on Wednesday. 



Abi Carter

Abi studied History & German at the University of Manchester. She has since worked as a writer, editor and content marketeer, but still has a soft spot for museums, castles...

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