Heathrow Airport suspends all flights due to 'drone sighting' - latest updates

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Emma Gilthorpe, Heathrow's executive director for expansion, said the airport was committed to delivering the third runway scheme responsibly and urged local residents to have their say.

The first sighting was shortly after 5.30pm this evening.

Gatwick and Heathrow officials have pledge to invest in anti-drone technology, with United Kingdom transport secretary Chris Grayling saying to Parliament on Monday to extend drone exclusion zones near United Kingdom airports.

'As a precautionary measure, Heathrow Airport has stopped departures and officers based at Heathrow are now investigating the reports with colleagues from Heathrow Airport, ' the force added.

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Flight departures have been suspended at London's Heathrow Airport following reports of a drone sighting.

The airport is planning for an increase in its capacity of up to an extra 25,000 flights a year before the third runway opens, Heathrow said, as it outlined the latest phase of its expansion proposals.

The west London hub apologised for any disruption caused to passengers after flights were suspended for around an hour on Tuesday.

The reported sightings follow the pre-Christmas shutdown of London's Gatwick Airport for parts of three consecutive days - also due to reported drone sightings.

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Heathrow and Gatwick responded by ordering military-grade anti-drone defences worth "several million pounds".

Gatwick said it had spent £5m to prevent future attacks.

Locals now get half a day's respite from noise when take-offs and landings switch to the opposite runway at 3pm, but Hacan claims this would be reduced to one third of a day.

Ministers announced that from 30 November operators of drones weighing between 250g and 20kg will be required to register and take an online drone pilot competency test.

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