Two arrested in Gatwick Airport drone scare that delayed flights

London Gatwick Airport Drone Attack Air Travel Christmas

London Gatwick Airport Drone Attack Air Travel Christmas

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First published December 22, 11:25 a.m. PT Update, 11:46 a.m.: Adds mention of tweets by Sussex police and statement from Gatwick CEO concerning deliberate nature of incident.

DCI Tingley revealed that there were some "persons of interest", but would not say if police were close to making any further arrests.

More than 200 reports of drone sightings were made and police took 67 statements, including from police officers and airport workers.

He urged anyone with information about the drone incidents to contact Sussex police and said the department continued to urge "the public, passengers and the wider community around Gatwick" to "be vigilant". "By the end of the weekend, things should be back to normal".

Vivienne Shorrock said she was "relieved" to have avoided the disruption. He said they were receiving medical care.

Her husband David joked the drama was a "nice distraction from Brexit".

However, it warned that passengers should expect delays and cancellations as it continues to recover from the biggest disruption since an Icelandic volcanic ash cloud in 2010.

The airport's runway was first closed after sightings at about 9pm on Wednesday, which ran until 10pm on Thursday - disrupting or ending the travel plans of 110,000 passengers scheduled to fly that day. The best guide may be what happened on Friday night, when the airport was shut down for 70 minutes after a drone was spotted.

The army was then called in to secure the airport's perimeter and nearby areas.

It is believed that the Israeli-developed Drone Dome system, which can jam communications between the drone and its operator, was used.

Often a lack of robust encryption in the signalling between operator and drone means that the devices can be easy to hack and take control of.

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling told the BBC that anti-drone technologies had been deployed at Gatwick.

The system, which is said to have a range of several miles, uses four radars to give 360-degree detection in order to identify and track targets.

The airport has offered a £50,000 (€56,000) reward through Crimestoppers for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for the disruption last week.

The Gatwick Airport drone drama which grounded hundreds of flights will be discussed by ministers in a Christmas Eve conference call.

The drones caused misery for travellers, many sleeping on the airport floor as they searched for alternative routes to holidays and Christmas family gatherings. 757 flights, with more than 124,000 passport had planned on Saturday to act, said a spokesman for the airport of the DPA.

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