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Walsh Gives British Airways CEO Praise After IT Meltdown

London Heathrow, United Kingdom - August 28, 2015: A British Airways Boeing 787 with the registration G-ZBJE taking off from London Heathrow Airport (LHR) in the United Kingdom. British Airways is the flag carrier airline of the United Kingdom based at London Heathrow airport.

Alex Cruz “could not have done a better job” in handling passenger crisis, according to IAG executive.

Days after British Airways was grounded by a systemwide IT outage, the leader of their parent company is giving airline chief executive Alex Cruz praise for how the situation was handled. Speaking to BBC News, International Airlines Group (IAG) president Willie Walsh publicly backed Cruz and said blaming him for the situation was unfair.

The IT issue, attributed to a “power surge” affecting a British Airways server, caused passengers to be stranded over the Memorial Day Weekend, while flyers who did get in the air arrived without their luggage. Blame was immediately focused on the leadership of the British flag carrier over the canceled flights. However, Walsh claims Cruz “could not have done a better job” in handling the situation, despite the number of flyers who were stuck.

“The team at British Airways did everything they could in the circumstances to recover the operation as quickly as they did,” Walsh told BBC News. “Our focus will be on making sure that any of our customers who experienced disruption are managed and satisfied with how we handled things.”

In addition to offering his support to Cruz, Walsh also offered his apologies for the situation. With the outage resolved, the airline conglomerate executive said the company’s next focus would be doing “…everything we can to make up [for] the disruption they suffered.”

The airline has begun an investigation as to why power was lost at the corporate IT center and how the power surge happened in the first place. Walsh acknowledged that discovering the source of the issue “will take some time.”

[Photo: Shutterstock]

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HarryHolden68 June 2, 2017

Walsh claims Cruz “could not have done a better job” in handling the situation" Really? Did he do his media training in the same school as Comical Ali? Appearances suggested that nobody had a clue how to manage the passenger situation created and that BA just left passengers to fend for themselves. Now the BBC are reporting that BA are telling passengers to claim for incidental expenses on their travel insurance. If it wasn't disgraceful, it would be funny.

Sydneyberlin June 2, 2017

The 'source' will be money-saving in the wrong place. Not that he would ever publicly acknowledge this!