Gatwick Airport Suspends Flights After Drones Reportedly Spotted Over Airfield

London’s Gatwick airport shut down over drone sighting

Gatwick announced the runway had reopened at about 3am on Thursday, but 45 minutes later it was shut again after a further sighting of drones.

Passengers reported that some flights were diverted to other United Kingdom airports, including Birmingham, Manchester and Stansted.

Flights at London's Gatwick airport remained suspended early on Thursday, 5 hours after the UK'S second-busiest airport halted them to investigate reports of 2 drones flying over its airfield, inconveniencing passengers days before the Christmas holiday period.

In their latest statement, Gatwick advised: "Please do not travel to the airport without checking with your airline first".

"We will update when we have suitable reassurances that it is appropriate to re-open the runway".

Two drones were reportedly spotted hovering near a runway, prompting the airport to stop all flights while it investigated the sightings.

What are the restrictions around flying drones near airports?

Luton Airport worker Adam Webster, who said he was forced to work an extra five hours until 4am due to diverted flights, offered lifts home to affected peoples living nearby.

It added an apology, saying passenger and staff safety was its "foremost priority".

Gatwick Airport said airlines were "working to provide affected passengers with hotel accommodation" or provide alternative travel options.

The statement read: "Due to drone activity on the airfield at Gatwick, all arriving and departing flights are now suspended".

The air traffic control tower at Gatwick Airport is seen through fields in southern England, Britain, October 9, 2016.

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