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easyJet cancel all flights from Gatwick as army is sent in

The operator made the decision to cancel all flights for today 20th Dec as a result of uncertainty over when the airport would reopen for flights.

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Following almost 24 hours of disruption the airline has now made the difficult decision to cancel all remaining flights for the day.

In a statement by easyJet they said:

“We are making every effort to get people to their destination at this important time of the year, but following reports of drones flying over Gatwick Airport, the runway remains closed and all flights are currently suspended. At this stage there is no indication of when the airport might re-open and as a result we have cancelled all flights due to operate to or from London Gatwick today.

“We expect disruption to continue into tomorrow and so advise all customers flying to and from London Gatwick tomorrow to check the status of their flight on our Flight Tracker www.easyjet.com/en/flight-tracker or via the app. Customers on cancelled flights, will be entitled to a free of charge transfer to an alternative flight and hotel accommodation if required. We will also reimburse any reasonable expenses incurred by passengers who arrange their own comparable alternative transport.

“Whilst the situation is outside of our control, we recognise how frustrating this is for everyone involved and would like to apologise to passengers for the disruption to their travel plans.

“The safety of its passengers and crew remains our highest priority.”

It is now known that specialist army personnel are being brought in to help assist at the airport but it is not yet confirmed in what capacity they will do so.

All around the airport every road and layby has been filled with a police or emergency vehicle as every effort is made to track and stop the drones and operators.

Crawley MP Henry Smith tweeted:

Gatwick

Over a tonne of dangerous skin lightening creams seized at Gatwick Airport

More than a tonne of potentially carcinogenic cosmetics, including skin lightening creams, were seized at Gatwick Airport.

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West Sussex Trading Standards officers came to inspect the products after they were alerted by Border Force.

Officers noticed many of these brands had previously been found to contain hydroquinone – a banned substance linked to causing cancer.

Ten products were sent for safety testing and all failed. Eight contained hydroquinone and two were incorrectly labelled.

An investigation is taking place into the importer.

The products arrived into Gatwick Airport on 15 May 2019.

Peter Aston, Trading Standards Team Manager, said:

“Skin lightening creams containing hydroquinone that haven’t been prescribed by a doctor are banned in the UK, as they can cause serious side effects if used incorrectly. 

“Although some of the products detained listed hydroquinone as an ingredient, most did not and we must remind those using these types of products to only buy from reputable sources.”

Debbie Kennard, West Sussex County Council Cabinet Member, said:

“These products are very dangerous and have been linked to causing cancer and other skin diseases. I would like to thank our Trading Standards team for helping to put a stop to this unscrupulous trade.”

If you have been supplied with a skin lightening cream that lists hydroquinone as an ingredient, you can let Trading Standards know by calling the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 0405060 or by visiting www.westsussex.gov.uk/tsreport.

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