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Dublin Airport Faces Third Day of Delays and Cancellations After Drones Spotted Flying Around the Airfield

Dublin Airport Faces Third Day of Delays and Cancellations After Drones Spotted Flying Around the Airfield

Dublin Airport was forced to suspend all flight operations for 40 minutes on Monday evening after an authorised drone was spotted flying around the airfield. It is the third time the airport has been temporarily shut down due to confirmed drone sightings following similar incidents on Friday and Saturday.

A spokesperson for the Dublin Airport Authority confirmed that operations were suspended at around 7:05 pm on Monday before being allowed to resume at 7:45 pm after the all-clear was given.

“The reckless & irresponsible behaviour of those causing ongoing drone disruptions at Dublin Airport is unacceptable,” the airport authority said in a statement. “Those found responsible will face prosecution,” the statement continued.

It is illegal to fly a drone within 5km of Dublin Airport and, like many international airports, the airfield is equipped with a sophisticated drone detection system.

Dublin Airport is not believed, however, to have assets in place that can down a drone flying illegally in its airspace.

On Monday, the airport was able to avoid mass disruption but delays and several diversions were reported on Friday and Saturday. Ryanair has called on Irish transport minister Eamon Ryan to take “immediate action” to prevent further disruption.

On Tuesday, the budget carrier took to its social media platforms to mock the minister’s response in a series of critical memes. Ryanair says 8 aircraft have so far had to divert as a result of the drone sightings, displacing more than 1,400 passengers.

“Such drone disruptions at Ireland’s main airport are unacceptable. We are calling on Minister Ryan to take urgent action to protect the country’s main airport from repeated disruptions from illegal drone activity,” the airline said in a statement.

Hundreds of flights were cancelled and thousands of passengers were stranded at Gatwick Airport after drones were spotted in and around the airport over a three-day period in December 2018.

The incident led to airports around the world investing in drone detection and protection systems.

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