A U-2 spy plane caused delays at LAX last week. According to Mail Online, the spy plane caused a software glitch at an air traffic control center in California that caused hundreds of flights to be delayed. The U-2 aircraft was flying at 60,000 feet but the glitch caused air traffic controllers to focus on other planes not colliding with it — even though the other airliners were thousands of miles below it.
According to the report:
“The spy plane’s altitude and route apparently overloaded a computer system called ERAM, which generates display data for air-traffic controllers. Back-up computer systems also failed.”
The spy plane that caused delays at LAX also caused delays and cancellations at other airports in the area. Airports in southern California, western Arizona, southern Nevada and parts of Utah were also affected by the glitch. To put it into perspective, the glitch caused 27 cancellations of arriving flights and 212 delays at LAX alone. As of now, officials aren’t completely sure why the glitch occurred but an investigation is pending.
The FAA is also investigating and released the following statement:
“FAA technical specialists resolved the specific issue that triggered the problem on Wednesday, and the FAA has put in place mitigation measures as engineers complete development of software changes.”
The spy plane that caused delays at LAX and other airports in the United States is part of a 1950s Air Force fleet. The U-2 planes were previously used to monitor Soviet nuclear sites and are currently being phased out. According to Reuters, the U-2 plane that caused the glitch was identified as the “Dragon Lady.” While the software issue has been rectified, the FAA is being very particular about what information they are releasing and what they are confirming. This likely has a lot to do with the nature of the plane — being government owned and operated and all.
As previously reported by Inquisitr.com, the U-2 was first flown in 1955. Over the years, several of these planes have been shot down, especially over Cuba, China, and the Soviet Union, but they are still used by the government today. The planes have been used for “secretive missions” because of their ability to fly at extremely high altitudes. These planes have no problem flying through all types of nasty weather because of their altitude advantage — which makes them ideal for spy missions.
The spy plane that caused delays at LAX was headed to an undisclosed location.
[Photo courtesy: Getty Images via Mail Online]