Epic Fail: Thousands of Passengers at Heathrow and Gatwick Stuck as Border Force’s E-Gates Get Stuck
13:23 GMT 24.09.2021 (Updated: 13:36 GMT 01.03.2022)
Passengers flying in and out of British airports have been using e-gates for several years. The electronic turnstiles allow passengers through once they scan their biometric passports.
Britain’s busiest airports - Heathrow and Gatwick - were thrown into chaos on Friday, 24 September, when the UK Border Force’s e-gates stopped working.
A systems failure affected ports and airports across the country but the situation was at its worst at London’s two main international airports, Heathrow and Gatwick.
We’re aware of a systems failure impacting the e-gates, which are staffed & operated by Border Force. This issue is impacting a number of ports of entry and is not an isolated issue at Heathrow. Our teams are working with Border Force to find a solution as quickly as possible.— Heathrow Airport (@HeathrowAirport) September 24, 2021
One passenger said on social media there was chaos at Heathrow with the space to queue fast running out.
Heathrow later tweeted: "Earlier today, a systems failure impacted the e-gates, which are staffed and operated by Border Force. This issue, which impacted a number of ports of entry, has since been resolved and the e-gates at Heathrow are back up and running again."
Human logjam at Heathrow - apparently all the e gates at all the airports are down? That’s what the man just said. pic.twitter.com/BcJ9So3JVp— Louis Theroux (@louistheroux) September 24, 2021
International passengers have faced months of delays as staff process the COVID-19 documentation required to travel.
Welcome to England. No electronic gates working at Gatwick North ! pic.twitter.com/UVkS7mzAT6— Jeff Stelling (@JeffStelling) September 24, 2021
Heathrow Arrivals right now… pic.twitter.com/eYrXuFI80Q— Myles McLeod (@poetrypicture) September 24, 2021