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T5 baggage glitch leaves chaos

Thousands of passengers at Heathrow Terminal 5 were left stranded after a mechanical failure on the baggage system stopped them from checking in luggage.

An estimated 5,000 passengers were unable to board their flights, leading to disruption over a period of up to five hours. 
Flights from the terminal departed with hand baggage only after BAA suspended check-in of hold luggage while efforts were made to fix the problem on Sunday afternoon.

British Airways, which has sole use of Terminal 5, announced last night that the latest problem had been fixed shortly after 6pm and check-in had resumed.

It said flights had not been cancelled but “a number of” passengers with hold luggage had been unable to board flights.

A British Airways spokesman said: “A number of passengers have missed flights, and for those we are either re-booking them, refunding them, rerouting them, or providing hotel accommodation.”


He added: “We apologise to our customers for the inconvenience. The fault has been identified and repaired. Our priority is now to reload bags onto the next available flights.”

The £4.3 billion terminal was hit with baggage reclaim problems during its chaotic opening in March last year, forcing British Airways to cancel 34 flights on the first day.