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Lessons learned Dublin Airport apologises after 118 people miss flights due to security delays

'People did miss flights or were delayed and anxious, and we unreservedly apologise for that. We put our hands up, and we’ve learned from it'

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Busy departures area of Dublin Airport as people return to foreign travel. Picture; Gerry Mooney

Busy departures area of Dublin Airport as people return to foreign travel. Picture; Gerry Mooney

Busy departures area of Dublin Airport as people return to foreign travel. Picture; Gerry Mooney

A total of 118 people missed their flights from Dublin Airport early yesterday morning as there weren't enough resources at the security section to cope with the number of passengers.

Dublin Airport has issued an apology to the hundreds of passengers affected and admitted that lessons have been learned after the problem became apparent at around 8am.

Many frustrated passengers reported that there were only two security lanes open, and queues snaked out into the departure hall as a result.

Today Kevin Cullinane, interim group head of communications at the airport, said they were unprepared for the passenger numbers that presented, deployed extra resources as a result, and opened extra security lanes.

But the problem did not normalise until late morning.

“People did miss flights or were delayed and anxious, and we unreservedly apologise for that. We put our hands up, and we’ve learned from it,” he said.

Mr Cullinane estimated that 118 passengers missed flights, and that some were accommodated on later flights and others rebooked or will seek refunds from airlines.

Asked if it was possible that airlines could seek to pass-on the costs of the refunds to the airport he said it could not be ruled out.

“We completely empathise with anyone who was affected. There were people trying to reconnect with family, or get a well earned break away before their kids go back to school,” he said.

Mr Cullinane said everyone is trying to get used to new travel arrangements since restrictions were lifted on July 19, and that 50,000 people travelled through the airport yesterday, with 25,000 of them departing.

“Some people might assume the airport is quiet, while others are allowing a lot of time for their flights, so you can have a situation where people are going through security early, and others maybe later than they had expected, and this can be unpredictable,” said Mr Cullinane.

“There is more paperwork and certs and documentation and things to be checked before departure than in pre-Covid times, and it all adds time to the process.

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"Our advice has been to arrive in the airport two hours before a European flight, and three hours before a long-haul flight,” he added.

Some passengers reported yesterday that it took up to two hours to get through security.

Mr Cullinane said yesterday’s events were now being factored into a review of security and operations systems at the airport.

This article was amended on August 30 to reflect that 118 people missed their flight as opposed to 180 as first reported.

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