A damaged connectivity cable has taken the flight information display boards offline at London Gatwick Airport today, forcing airport staff to – honest – get out the dry erase markers and scribble information on whiteboards.
As an industry friend noted, having sent me news of this: “They seem to have forgotten all about the enterprise standards of Local Data / Fail over – Back-up systems / Independent internet connections on mission critical applications …”
Somebody in airport IT, or an exec who didn’t listen to the IT people, is due for a world-class version of what the Brits call a “bollocking.”
Hat Tip to the poor souls doing what they can. I’d assume if this happened at a hellpit of an airport like LaGuardia or Newark, somebody would just put a pillow in front of their face and read completely un-hearable updates into the public address system.
Due to damage to a Vodafone fibre optic cable, we are continuing to display our flight info manually. Contingencies are working – we have whiteboards and friendly staff on hand to help, and tens of thousands of passengers have departed on time. Apologies for any inconvenience.
— Gatwick Airport LGW (@Gatwick_Airport) August 20, 2018
— London 999 Feed (@999London) August 20, 2018
— Bob ?ankin ???????? (@bigbob25a) August 20, 2018
— Nigel Lane (@mrnaughtynige) August 20, 2018
Dave Haynes is the founder and editor of Sixteen:Nine, an online publication that has followed the digital signage industry for some 14 years. Dave does strategic advisory consulting work for many end-users and vendors, and also writes for many of them. He’s based near Halifax, Nova Scotia, on Canada’s east coast.