Lightning Strike Causes Delays at London Stansted Airport

(Bloomberg) -- A lightning strike temporarily knocked out the fueling system at London Stansted airport, the biggest base for Ryanair Holdings Plc, causing flight delays and cancellations early Sunday.

Engineers restored the system, though many flights were delayed, diverted or canceled at the airport about 40 miles (64 kilometers) north of central London, according to a statement on Stansted’s Twitter account.

Stansted is the third-busiest airport in London and a key hub for the discount airline Ryanair. The Irish carrier canceled a number of flights and advised customers of their options, including a full refund or a free transfer to the next available flight, it said in an emailed statement.

The delays occurred after thunderstorms swept across the U.K. in the overnight hours of the long holiday weekend, triggering thousands of lightning strikes. More than 200 flights were delayed at Stansted, with another 31 departures and 18 arrivals canceled, the Associated Press reported, citing data from FlightStats.

“We apologize to all customers affected by these disruptions, which are entirely beyond our control,” Ryanair said in the statement, declining to quantify the cancellations.

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