Irish travellers spared in US border system meltdown

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Irish travellers using US preclearance facilities were unaffected by a computer outage which caused massive delays in a number of airports in the US.

The four-hour incident, which hit US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) computers, left lines of angry passengers suffering major delays from South Florida to Boston to Los Angeles.

Airports affected on January 2US border queues in Atlanta January 2017 included Miami International, Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood in Florida, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International, New York’s JFK, Boston’s Logan International and Los Angeles International.

One tweeter posted a picture of long queues in the major hub of Atlanta.

A similar failure  – although shorter in duration – took place in October 2015. US customs officials blamed that incident on problems with the computers and kiosks used by passengers arriving in the country.

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America’s CBP said in a tweeted statement that: “All airports are back on line after a temporary outage of processing systems. No indication the disruption was malicious in nature”.

The agency said it took immediate action to address the issue and officers were still processing international travellers using alternate procedures at airports experiencing problems.

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Maria Sinnott

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