Luton Airport flights resume following fire but further disruption expected

London Luton Airport (LTN) has resumed flights after temporarily halting them earlier this week because a fire in the hub’s multistory parking garage caused a “significant structural collapse.” However, passengers could still face disruption at the airport over the coming days.

Luton Airport had suspended all flights until 3 p.m. Wednesday. About 18,000 passengers were affected by the disruption, and more than 125 flights due to arrive and depart the airport were canceled, according to travel data supplier OAG.

Flights to and from the airport have since resumed, but passengers should still brace for disruption and limited parking options, according to the airport. The Dart rail shuttle, which connects the hub to Luton Airport Parkway rail station, is also not in operation; a temporary replacement shuttle bus is in service.

A statement from the airport said:

“The runway is now open, and flights are beginning to arrive and depart. Main roads around the area have also re-opened, but delays are expected on the airport approach. For those arriving by car, the Long and Mid-stay car parks are fully operational, and a temporary drop-off area has been established in the Mid-stay car park. For those traveling to the airport by rail, the DART shuttle remains out of service with replacement buses in operation. Additional staff remain on hand to assist passengers across the airport. Those with queries relating to a parked vehicle or future booking, in Terminal Car Park 2 and Terminal Car Park 1, should contact for support.”

The flames swept through the third floor of Luton’s new Terminal 2 parking garage after a diesel car caught fire shortly before 9 p.m. Tuesday.

Bedfordshire Fire and Rescue Service was alerted at 8:47 p.m. local time; the rapidly escalating fire was declared a major incident at 9:38 p.m.

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Speaking to the BBC, fire chief Andy Hopkinson said that, thankfully, no members of the public had been harmed in the fire. He also said there was “no intelligence to suggest it was anything other than an accidental fire.”

According to Hopkinson, the parking garage did not have a fitted sprinkler system. It is believed that up to 1,200 vehicles may have been damaged during the fire, though Hopkinson also reiterated that a “substantial number” of vehicles were unscathed.

Home to EasyJet, Luton Airport is roughly 30 miles north of the center of London and is the U.K.’s fifth-largest airport.

Bottom line

Thousands of passengers face disruption after a vehicle fire caused significant damage to a parking garage at London Luton Airport. Travelers are advised to check the airport and their airline’s website to stay up to date with any potential further issues.

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