Emirates Flight EK1 from Dubai to London Heathrow was forced to make an emergency diversion to Gatwick Airport on Monday, March 14th, due to strong winds that prevented the aircraft from landing safely at Heathrow. The flight, which was scheduled to land at 11:40 am local time, had to circle London several times before rerouting to Gatwick.
Aviation website Flight Tracker reported that the Emirates A380 was forced to squawk 7770, an aviation term used to signal a general emergency on flights. The pilots made the decision to divert the flight to Gatwick Airport, where it landed safely.
The Emirates flight was not the only one affected by the strong winds, which reached up to 65mph in parts of the UK on Monday. An Air India Boeing 787-8 flight from Delhi also had to divert from Heathrow to Gatwick.
A spokesperson for NATS, the UK’s air traffic control service, said that the strong crosswinds affected air traffic at Heathrow Airport, resulting in some go-arounds and diversions. Travel disruptions were reported across Heathrow and parts of southern England due to the weather conditions.
Passengers on the Emirates flight and other affected flights were advised to check with their airlines for updates on their travel plans.