The last couple of months have been a nightmare for fliers. Two major outages forced authorities to ground numerous flights leading to long delays and impromptu cancellations around the holiday season. If you had somewhere to fly to and were left stranded in the airport, you know the frustration. So, what caused the outages, and couldn’t they have been avoided?
The disruption was digital, which means that someone out there could have done something to prevent it, should they have been proactive. Field Day delegate, Chris Hayner offers a breakdown of the outages in his article – “Murphy’s Endgame : It’ll Definitely Go Wrong If We Never Even Try To Fix It”. In the article, Hayner writes,
So there were some interesting oopsies in the kind-of-important-not-to-have-oopsies airline industry at the end of 2022 and the beginning of 2023. I’m going to highlight two of them that you probably heard about: The Southwest meltdown that caused something like 65% of flights to be canceled over the holidays, and the failure of the FAA’s Notice to Air Missions (or NOTAM) system. That one caused a 2-ish-hour “pause on all domestic departures.” These were both bad, for different reasons. But as we will see they share some unfortunate commonalities- not only with each other, but with a great many other organizations and businesses around the globe.
Read the rest of the story to get a full picture of what broke and caused the outages. For more such interesting stories, sign up to our mailing list.