Aborted BA 0089 LHR-NBO 12/7/06

Old Dec 8, 06, 1:29 am
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Aborted BA 0089 LHR-NBO 12/7/06

Tried to get to NBO last night. After a late push (for some reason we had to wait about 45 minutes for a push) we took off. Over the English channel the plane started circling, and after a bit the captain came on and told use we had to go back. We dumped fuel for 15 minutes and landed. We had the full escort, several fire trucks and a couple of cars.

By that time it was midnight, and no ground staff were available to meet us. So they kept us on the plane and fed us (in First, I had no complaints about that part). Eventually they decided we were going to stay the night, but no hotels were available (Heathrow had a bad day, with lots of cancelled flights and people sleeping in the terminal). They did find a hotel room for us Firsts, but it was near Gatwick (Crowley). When we got in the cab the driver told us it would take an hour to get there, and almost two to get back in the morning. Hardly seemed worth it, so we went back into the terminal. BA staff would not let us sleep in any lounges because the lounges would have to be staffed. We ended up in some cold room in front of Terminal 4 (right next to the "weighing room") sleeping on the floor.

What a miserable night. Now I'm in the Concorde room enjoying a bacon baguette and waiting for my 10 a.m. NBO flight. I've got my fingers crossed. If I had taken KQ like last time I would be on my way to Kigali right now.

Does a technical cancellation mean I've won the 600 Euro compensation prize? BA handed out a compensation letter when we got off the plane, but it was clearly prepared for all the flights cancelled earlier in the day due to weather (tornado hit London yesterday).

One funny thing is that they gave me a survey form before we took off and then took it back after the announcement that we were turning back (it disappeared while I was in the bathroom)
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Old Dec 8, 06, 2:16 am
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What a pain.

I fear you will not get compensation under the EU rules.

Firstly, BA did book you a room for the night. Granted it was far away, but it was a room. However, why didn't they book you in central London, where you could have at least taken the HEX in the morning? Two hours from Crawley would be a bit much. Maybe an hour.

Secondly, it was a 'technical' problem and probably a weather related one. See there are get out clauses in the EU regulations. So unless the flight was cancelled on a Tuesday, in a month with a Q in it, the airlines don't have to pay up. In that respect BA is no better than Ryan Air.

I think you best bet is writing BA direct and explain the problems you encounterd and it sounds like missed onward flights. The fact you are booked in First will help.

Hopefully you can make it on your way today.
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Old Dec 8, 06, 2:27 am
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"Why did they not book central London?"

Alot of flights got delayed and cancelled yesterday, so all the hotels would have been heaving i guess??
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Old Dec 8, 06, 2:32 am
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Originally Posted by LHR Tim View Post
What a pain.

I fear you will not get compensation under the EU rules.

Firstly, BA did book you a room for the night. Granted it was far away, but it was a room. However, why didn't they book you in central London, where you could have at least taken the HEX in the morning? Two hours from Crawley would be a bit much. Maybe an hour.

Secondly, it was a 'technical' problem and probably a weather related one. See there are get out clauses in the EU regulations. So unless the flight was cancelled on a Tuesday, in a month with a Q in it, the airlines don't have to pay up. In that respect BA is no better than Ryan Air.

I think you best bet is writing BA direct and explain the problems you encounterd and it sounds like missed onward flights. The fact you are booked in First will help.

Hopefully you can make it on your way today.
Definitely not weather related. The starboard engine fire sensor was not working. The pilot told me if he was flying in Europe or the US he would have continued the flight, but not over Africa.
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Old Dec 8, 06, 4:17 am
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Originally Posted by TREKSTER1006 View Post
"Why did they not book central London?"

Alot of flights got delayed and cancelled yesterday, so all the hotels would have been heaving i guess??
Tried a few days ago to book a hotel in central London for last night for a colleague, and virtually all the usual ones were full, even before any weather-related events. Not sure why but it seems to have been a particularly busy week in London anyway.
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Old Dec 8, 06, 4:23 am
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Originally Posted by BAAZ View Post
Tried a few days ago to book a hotel in central London for last night for a colleague, and virtually all the usual ones were full, even before any weather-related events. Not sure why but it seems to have been a particularly busy week in London anyway.
My guess is because it's office-party season and all the commuters are staying over in town.
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Old Dec 8, 06, 4:44 am
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Originally Posted by aristoph View Post
My guess is because it's office-party season and all the commuters are staying over in town.
And it's no better next week either! Trying to get a room next Tuesday and the only chain with consistent availability is Marriott - even some reward space, but not in the property we want...
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Old Dec 8, 06, 7:33 am
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This happened to me leaving CPT for Heathrow in October.

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/showt...t=NorthOrSouth

No compensation I'm afraid. You might get a few EC miles I suppose if you write to them.
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Old Dec 8, 06, 4:10 pm
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Originally Posted by NorthOrSouth View Post
This happened to me leaving CPT for Heathrow in October.

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/showt...t=NorthOrSouth

No compensation I'm afraid. You might get a few EC miles I suppose if you write to them.
Well if this doesn't count then what exactly to they have to pay compensation for under the EU rules?
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Old Dec 8, 06, 4:53 pm
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Originally Posted by jedison View Post
Well if this doesn't count then what exactly to they have to pay compensation for under the EU rules?
Would you rather the EU insist compensation is paid if a flight is affected by technical problems? Less scrupulous airlines would then have the option of turning back/not setting out, and paying out, or pressing on regardless to save the cash, potentially putting lives at risk.
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Old Dec 9, 06, 2:26 am
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Originally Posted by Teece View Post
Would you rather the EU insist compensation is paid if a flight is affected by technical problems? Less scrupulous airlines would then have the option of turning back/not setting out, and paying out, or pressing on regardless to save the cash, potentially putting lives at risk.
That's exactly the king of whinging we heard when the law got passed in the first place.

I'm not writing the law, I just want to know what it says.
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Old Dec 31, 06, 5:22 pm
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Update

So I wrote a firm but polite letter to BA complaining about the aforementioned, and received a very apologetic letter in reply (that specifically referenced what had happened), along with 150K BA miles. That was generous, I think.

I guess I'll have to fly BA again, at the very least in redemption mode. I've got real doubts about transiting through Heathrow, though. Between the one bag policy and lost luggage epidemic I seem guaranteed to wear the same clothes for a week again if I do that. I'm almost tempted to take Ethiopian through ADD again (well, maybe not). But the MFU to CW is SUCH a deal . . .

Anybody have any good ideas on how to get from SFO to Kigali, Rwanda, without going through Heathrow? SN Brussels is on wrong dates, and Lufthansa to ADD requires an overnight in ADD (fun once, not again). Given the flight frequencies I think I'm stuck transiting through NBO. But how to get there? Maybe Swiss through ZRH?
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Old Dec 31, 06, 7:07 pm
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SFO-SIN various
SIN-DXB SQ or EK
DXB-NBO EK
NBO-KGL MZ

example
[KVS Availability Tool 2.5.0/Platinum - Sabre: ITN/US-AXC1]
Code:
SFO  San Francisco Int'l CA US [KSFO]
KGL  Kigali Gregoire Kayibanda RW [HRYR]

Carrier   Flight From Depart    To   Arrive    A/C  St   Availability
--------- ------ ---- --------- ---- --------- ---- ---- -------------------------- 
SQ        15     SFO  12:30     SIN  00:50 +2  772  1    Z0 C4 J4 D4 Y9 B9 W9 Q9 N9 V9 E9 M9 H9 T0
- > EK    433    SIN  02:50     DXB  06:15     773  0    F4 A4 J4 C0 Y4 W4 M4 B4 K4 Q4 H4 L4 T4 V4
- > EK    719    DXB  10:05     NBO  14:15     332  0    F4 A4 J4 C4 Y4 W4 M4 B4 K4 Q4 H4 L4 T4 V4
- > MZ    108    NBO  17:00     KGL  17:20     M82  0    C4 J4 Y4 Z4 N4 M4 B4 K4 H4 S4 Q4 T4 V4 L4
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Old Dec 31, 06, 8:09 pm
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Originally Posted by harryhv View Post
SFO-SIN various
SIN-DXB SQ or EK
DXB-NBO EK
NBO-KGL MZ

example
[KVS Availability Tool 2.5.0/Platinum - Sabre: ITN/US-AXC1]
Code:
SFO  San Francisco Int'l CA US [KSFO]
KGL  Kigali Gregoire Kayibanda RW [HRYR]

Carrier   Flight From Depart    To   Arrive    A/C  St   Availability
--------- ------ ---- --------- ---- --------- ---- ---- -------------------------- 
SQ        15     SFO  12:30     SIN  00:50 +2  772  1    Z0 C4 J4 D4 Y9 B9 W9 Q9 N9 V9 E9 M9 H9 T0
- > EK    433    SIN  02:50     DXB  06:15     773  0    F4 A4 J4 C0 Y4 W4 M4 B4 K4 Q4 H4 L4 T4 V4
- > EK    719    DXB  10:05     NBO  14:15     332  0    F4 A4 J4 C4 Y4 W4 M4 B4 K4 Q4 H4 L4 T4 V4
- > MZ    108    NBO  17:00     KGL  17:20     M82  0    C4 J4 Y4 Z4 N4 M4 B4 K4 H4 S4 Q4 T4 V4 L4
Thanks! I've done KQ via BKK but hadn't thought about DXB before.
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