Interesting delay on BA 1314 (LHR-ABZ) Thursday

Old Jun 14, 19, 2:26 am
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Interesting delay on BA 1314 (LHR-ABZ) Thursday

I was on the BA 1314 yesterday (13th June) to Aberdeen and we were delayed leaving Heathrow due to issues with the biometrics boarding system. Everything seemed to be working fine, all passengers seemingly on the plane on time but then the gate agent came down to ask if certain passengers were on board. Fairly normal so far.

A couple of the mentioned names were indeed on board so I guess that they just didnít register correctly but the e-gate just let them through?

Anyway following that the cabin crew had to go down the entire length of the plane and identify each piece of hand baggage to a passenger on board. Anyone know the reason for this search and what the issues would be with the biometrics that prevented the plane from leaving even though they had confirmed the onboard passengers?
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Old Jun 14, 19, 2:39 am
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There was another report of the same thing a couple of days back... pretty sure I read it on here, but I can't recall the actual thread.
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Old Jun 14, 19, 2:56 am
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The key issue here is that for security reasons, every single bag on board needs to be security scanned with a passenger attached to it - or has been through an enhanced security process with a closed loop in terms of delivery to the aircraft.

The baggage identification issue relates not to the biometrics but to normal FLY or any similar system, where people are recorded as boarded - and therefore technically could get on the aircraft - but then don't appear to be onboard during reconciliation. One common problem is that some passengers become unwell, and elect / get elected not to fly. In some cases it isn't necessary for them to have stepped on board, but if the computer thinks it could have happened then the bags need to be reconciled. Bags in the hold also need to be reconciled. There are also the usual glitches that can happen when someone (e..g.) two boarding passes, the second gets failed and there is a debate as to what happened when. Also occasionally there are FLY outages, people check in during or before the outage, and then FLY doesn't really know who is on board or not. The latter is usually resolved during the boarding process.

In extreme circumstances, and I've only had this once in all my travels, the entire aircraft gets offloaded, people get taken down with their hand luggage to the apron/ramp , the empty aircraft checked by crew, and then asked to point to their hold bags before reboarding. At Heathrow you really want to avoid this if possible.
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Old Jun 14, 19, 12:03 pm
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Makes sense regarding the bags, and having good luggage offloaded is very common so makes sense the same applies for hand baggage.

I guess this is most likely someone that the system erroneously marked as boarded but they could be found on board?

Given the number of people who actually were onboard who werenít marked at the gate I guess the system was having quite a day!
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Old Jun 14, 19, 12:35 pm
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave View Post
The key issue here is that for security reasons, every single bag on board needs to be security scanned with a passenger attached to it - or has been through an enhanced security process with a closed loop in terms of delivery to the aircraft.

The baggage identification issue relates not to the biometrics but to normal FLY or any similar system, where people are recorded as boarded - and therefore technically could get on the aircraft - but then don't appear to be onboard during reconciliation. One common problem is that some passengers become unwell, and elect / get elected not to fly. In some cases it isn't necessary for them to have stepped on board, but if the computer thinks it could have happened then the bags need to be reconciled. Bags in the hold also need to be reconciled. There are also the usual glitches that can happen when someone (e..g.) two boarding passes, the second gets failed and there is a debate as to what happened when. Also occasionally there are FLY outages, people check in during or before the outage, and then FLY doesn't really know who is on board or not. The latter is usually resolved during the boarding process.

In extreme circumstances, and I've only had this once in all my travels, the entire aircraft gets offloaded, people get taken down with their hand luggage to the apron/ramp , the empty aircraft checked by crew, and then asked to point to their hold bags before reboarding. At Heathrow you really want to avoid this if possible.
Any idea why they had to identify their HAND luggage though? Surely either the pax is on the plane (with or without their hand luggage) or didn't make it onto the plane (in which case their hand luggage didn't either). I don't immediately see how hand luggage can be on the plane without the passenger unless a passenger disembarked having boarded.
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Old Jun 14, 19, 12:59 pm
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Originally Posted by abligh View Post
Any idea why they had to identify their HAND luggage though? Surely either the pax is on the plane (with or without their hand luggage) or didn't make it onto the plane (in which case their hand luggage didn't either). I don't immediately see how hand luggage can be on the plane without the passenger unless a passenger disembarked having boarded.
But what if the passenger had really disembarked? And had "forgotten" a bag, even if was duty-frees? The problem is that the check point is at the gate, so that gives one version of the truth, but if in reality the aircraft has a different version of the truth, then the reconciliation is snookered. Now one of the reasons that a cabin crew member never ever leaves the boarding door is to keep an eye on this, and to report problems back, but people to reverse up airbridges to recover something forgotten. The biggest problem in this specific area, incidentally, is toddlers running all over the place with the parent trying to juggle baggage as well. That and people getting ill. So it's more difficult than it looks to keep the area secure. And more generally the problem is people not recorded as boarded and perhaps their hold baggage is, hence the "will passenger Smith please make themselves known to the cabin crew" messages.
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Old Jun 14, 19, 1:53 pm
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In this case no hold luggage was required to be taken off as all ďmissingĒ passengers were located on the plane.

Obviously itís more important to know who is on the plane once it pushes back, but interesting that it caused a 30 min delay.

Also not my luckiest trip, delayed over an hour on todayís return to LHR on BA 1315
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Old Jun 15, 19, 7:07 am
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Last year I flew TAP LIS-LHR and ba LHR-BHD (one PNR).
When I tried to scan my BP in LHR it failed and the short version, after some weeks of disputes about all sorts of issues, is that I was not shown as flying the first leg,
It still beggars belief that I was on a flight but, officially, not so.
In the end, when I mentioned going to the CAA, LIS found that I was on board.
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Old Jun 15, 19, 6:04 pm
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This happens when a passenger who is no longer travelling has been on board the aircraft. This could be due to multiple reasons and because the passenger has been deboarded we need to check they havenít left anything on board (even though they may say they have not left anything).
If there is a piece nobody is claiming to own then the whole aircraft may have to be deboarded and start the boarding process again after additional security checks onboard.
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