British Airways disruption continues for third day

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The computer crash affected BA's booking system, baggage handling, mobile phone apps and check-in desks, leaving passengers facing long queues and confusion in airports or delays while planes were held on runways.

The airline is near full operational capacity following a power cut to its IT system that resulted in massive flight cancellations at Gatwick and Heathrow.

Cruz apologised in a video statement, saying: "I know this has been a frightful time for customers".

British Airways says it's continuing to work hard to resume a normal flight schedule at two London airports a day after a global IT failure crippled its services.

British Airways' epic meltdown over a busy holiday weekend further fanned public outrage of an industry infamous for its focus on cost cuts over customer service, leaving the United Kingdom carrier scrambling to explain how a local computer outage could lead to thousands of stranded passengers. The airline canceled departures for most of Saturday from its busy London Heathrow hub and at Gatwick Airport.

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Giving his first media interview since a major outage on Saturday caused the airline's IT system to collapse, Alex Cruz refused to resign and said the problem was not a result of outsourcing jobs to other countries.

She said the problems were caused by a power outage and the airline was investigating the incident.

Experts predict the knock-on effect on the BA could continue for several days.

Spanish-listed shares of parent company IAG, which also owns carriers Iberia, Aer Lingus and Vueling, dropped 2.8 percent on Monday after the outage.

Passengers on cancelled flights have been told to use the BA website to rebook. The Guardian reported that British Airways GMB union has said the airline's decision to outsource hundreds of IT jobs to India a year ago was behind the flight disruptions.

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People wait with their luggage at a rebooking zone at Heathrow Terminal 5 in London, Britain, on Monday.

The GMB union has claimed the problems were down to BA cutting "hundreds of dedicated and loyal" IT staff and contracting the work out to India to save money.

BA said that a significant number of bags left at Heathrow airport would be reunited with passengers free of charge by courier, and warned customers against coming to the airport to collect their luggage.

Southwest Airlines canceled more than 1,500 flights following a system failure in July.

British Airways pledged to reunite bags with irked customers - though it cautioned it may take some time.

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Heathrow echoed the airline's warning to travelers, tweeting that "delays and cancellations of British Airways flights are expected today".

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