Tags: chicago | air | traffic | control | fire | ohare | midway

Chicago Air Traffic Control Fire Halts O'Hare, Midway Flights

By    |   Friday, 26 Sep 2014 09:27 AM

A fire at an air traffic control facility grounded all flights into and out of Chicago's O'Hare and Midway international airports on Friday, the Federal Aviation Administration said.

Reuters reported the FAA saying employees at the facility in Aurora, Illinois, were evacuated and a fire department was on the scene.

More than 300 flights into and out of the two airports had been canceled by 7:30 a.m. CT on Friday, according to the tracking website FlightAware.com.

Crews responding to the fire found a man with self-inflicted wounds in the basement of the facility, the Chicago Tribune reported.

The man was taken to a hospital, the newspaper said, citing an Aurora Police Department spokesman.

The Associated Press reported it was the second time since May that a problem at one of the Chicago area's major control facilities prompted a ground stop at O'Hare and Midway.

The fire led to the evacuation of the Chicago Air Route Traffic Control Center in Aurora, about 40 miles west of downtown Chicago, FAA spokeswoman Elizabeth Cory said.

One injury was reported, Cory said, without providing details. Management of the region's air space was transferred to other facilities, but it was unclear how long the stoppage would last.

In May, an electrical problem forced the evacuation of a regional radar facility in suburban Elgin. A bathroom exhaust fan overheated and melted insulation on some wires, sending smoke through the facility's ventilation system and into the control room.

That site was evacuated for three hours, and more than 1,100 flights were canceled.

The Aurora facility is known as an en-route center, and handles aircraft flying at high altitudes, including those on approach or leaving Chicago's airports. Air traffic closer to the airports is handled by a different facility and by the control towers located at the airfields.

A computer glitch at a similar facility on the West Coast in April forced a 45-minute shutdown at Los Angeles International Airport.

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A fire at an air traffic control facility grounded all flights into and out of Chicago's O'Hare and Midway international airports on Friday, the Federal Aviation Administration said.
chicago, air, traffic, control, fire, ohare, midway
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2014-27-26
Friday, 26 Sep 2014 09:27 AM
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