Ryanair calling on minister to resign over drones disrupting flights

Ryanair CEO speaks about drone issues at Dublin Airport

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A major international airport had to be closed this evening with flight diversions causing misery for passengers due to drones being flown nearby. The closure at Dublin Airport is said to be the sixth time in as many weeks that the runways have had to be shut and Ireland’s transport minister is under pressure to resign.

Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary is calling on Eamon Ryan to step down from his job.

He says that despite the repeated closures Mr Ryan has failed to do anything to prevent Ireland’s main airport from being closed.

Major airports like Heathrow, Charles de Gaulle and Schiphol all have effective anti-drone measures in place which prevent closures.

But Ryanair says this technology is not in place in Dublin.

Mr O’Leary said: “It’s unacceptable that more Ryanair flights and hundreds of passengers have again suffered disruptions and diversions as Dublin Airport closed for a sixth time in six weeks by drones.”

He added: “Transport minister Eamon Ryan has failed to take any effective action to protect Dublin Airport and his strategy of holding ‘meetings’ is useless.

“As always minister Ryan promises ‘stronger measures’ but delivers nothing.

“Minister Ryan should explain why other European airports have effective drone measures in place but Dublin Airport keeps being closed, while he is asleep on the job.

“Sadly, our transport minister is all talk and no action when it comes to drone closures. As transport minister he should now fix this issue or resign and let somebody more effective do the job.”

And in a video filmed earlier tonight Mr O’Leary said: “It’s unacceptable, that we have the incompetent minister for transport, who has done nothing for five weeks, to protect Dublin Airport from these drone strikes.

“I want to apologise to our passengers that have been diverted this evening and I would call on them to write to Eamon Ryan to call for him to stop holding meetings and to stop talking about acting and have actual action.

“Minister Ryan, it’s time to stop talking, stop sitting on your hands and do something useful for Irish transport.”

Tweeting about this evening’s earlier incident, Dublin Airport said: “Flight operations resumed at 18.59 after a confirmed drone sighting suspended operations at 18.27. @GardaTraffic was immediately advised.

“Three flights were diverted discommoding passengers as a result of this reckless & illegal activity of flying a drone within 5km of @DublinAirport.”

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They went on to say: “Drones causing disruptions at airports and events is a state wide issue that needs to be tackled with new legislation, a state agency responsible for managing counter drone technology and harsher sentences.”

It is illegal to fly a drone within 5km of Dublin Airport.

Express.co.uk has contacted Ireland’s Department of Transport for comment.

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