United Airlines Suffering Flight Delays Again Due To Another Computer Glitch

I just saw this report from Live And Let’s Fly:

Another day, another IT glitch. United Airlines this time. Allegedly at 11:30p last night a software update was loaded to a system that supplies flight planning data to pilots. Reports of delays throughout the country are filtering in on Flyertalk. There is no ground stop: pilots can still calculate weight and balance the old fashion way on pen and paper — but it is creating delays for many flights this morning.

Interestingly, weight & balance was a discussion point in the recent Delta outage.  When things started to slowly get moving, reports were that Delta pilots were needing to make phone calls to calculate their weight & balance manually.  This lead to more delays after the initial wave of delays, but did get planes moving.

It seems that United may be dealing with a similar issue this morning.  If so, I have no doubt flights will be delayed, causing a ripple effect throughout the day.

This is the second issue United has had in less than a month, though the previous one was more impactful.

Software Requires Testing, Investment

I know, I know.  Captain obvious.  But, software patches are meant to fix problems.  Even big companies like Apple have problems when they insert new code into their ecosystem.  But, it doesn’t have to happen that way.  It really is time for the airlines to invest heavily in more reliable systems.

The post United Airlines Suffering Flight Delays Again Due To Another Computer Glitch was published first on Pizza in Motion



  1. Dumb comment, but, as more of this manual calculation is happening, when does something like this lead to more than just a delay? Hopefully never, but, at some point, I’d imagine either IT investments need to happen, or some regulatory agency (FAA) would eventually step in and say “if you aren’t maintaining your IT on your own, then we will force you.”

    1. Trevor, I don’t think we’ll ever see that specifically. There are already procedures for delay compensation. With more issues, maybe congress would push for more teeth in those. The only way I see the FAA getting involved is if it involves safety. They don’t seem to be hawkish on protecting consumers from things other than safety. Not that they haven’t acted in other areas, but not passionately and speedily.

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