BAA is lashing out at the head of IATA for his comments about how the airport operator needs to get things in order as the UK moves into the seventh day of high security alert.
“His comments are ill-informed and misplaced,’’ the spokesman told the Daily Telegraph newspaper and other news wires. “These are the most stringent security measures brought in by the UK and to suggest our contingency plans didn’t stack up is frankly negligent of the issues.’’
“Our robust contingency plans saw seven out of 10 flights departing with two-hour delays 48 hours after the alert, and we are now back to normal,” continued the spokesman, “that’s a good operation by anyone’s standard.”
The Interational Air Transport Association (IATA) Chief Executive Giovanni Bisignani told a news reporters in Sydney on Wednesday that BAA should have had a stronger contingency plan and asked national security authorities to avoid the chaos created by the boosted security checks.
Ryanair considering suing
The row comes as Ryanair considers suing the British government in a bid to recover lost earnings in the wake of the security crunch that has cancelled hundreds of flights.
In an email to other airlines including British Airways and Virgin Atlantic, Ryanair said it is considering using the Britain’s Transport Act under which the government can be liable for compensation resulting from its emergency directions.
Airlines are looking toclaim up £300 million in lost earnings stemming from cancelled flights.
BA has cancelled more than 1,000 flights in the past week following tight security controls at UK airports following a foiled bomb plot.