An ongoing investigation into the Aer Lingus system crash last weekend is focusing on the failure of a back-up technology system, the airline’s CEO told staff in an update.
Er Lingus passengers have faced massive disruption after 66 of its 196 flights were canceled during what its CEO Lynne Embleton described as “a horrible weekend”.
“Early indications are that this was caused by construction work in the UK damaging a cable which disrupted connectivity for several businesses across different sectors,” Embleton said in the update sent to staff on Tuesday. “Of course, the key question is why our vendor’s backup failed to protect our business.
“A full investigation is underway.
The airline’s Astral passenger service system, which it has used for decades, was down for nearly 10 hours, hitting check-in, boarding and many critical functions, forcing it to adopt its plan business continuity.
Embleton praised the staff for “a truly heroic performance under extremely difficult circumstances”.
“Saturday was a bad day for all of us at Aer Lingus, but the response was phenomenal,” she said, thanking “colleagues who missed birthday parties, worked nights, missed family and concerts with friends”.
Sources told the Sunday Independent that there was anger among staff towards management for the way the system crash was handled.
Some staff who were on duty on Saturday said they felt abandoned and abandoned in the face of a very difficult and unstable situation.
Management sent regular detailed update emails to staff during the disruption, but front-line sources said most on-duty employees do not have access to their email and therefore have not seen the emails until after.
In a response, a spokeswoman said ‘management was available at Dublin Airport and its other locations to try to help staff as much as possible during what was a very difficult situation for customers and the personal.
“The company also communicated extensively with staff throughout the day and the following days, to update them on the situation.”