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Luton Airport drone shot
Mark Castro / Alamy Stock Photo

Uh oh, Luton Airport’s runway has melted in the heat

Looks like we won’t be travelling anywhere refreshingly cool any time soon

Written by
Caley Collins
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If you feel like you’ve been melting during this heatwave, you aren’t the only one. Luton Airport’s tarmac actually liquefied yesterday due to the record temperatures of 39.1C, with all flights having to be cancelled for several hours. 

The London airport, used by airlines like Ryanair, EasyJet, TUI and Wizz Air, only has one runway, which had to be closed as, according to the airfield’s Twitter account, ‘high surface temperatures caused a small section to lift’. The last known flight to leave was at 3.07pm before departures were suspended at 3.22pm and all inbound flights were diverted while engineers worked to fix the issue.

Airport officials reopened the runway to departing flights at 5.40pm, announcing it at 6pm. However, inbound flights are still suspended until further notice, with at least 14 flights scheduled to land at Luton having to be rerouted to other airports, including Gatwick and Stansted, according to FlightRadar24.  

The airport has apologised for any inconveniences caused, but passengers are still furious. One angry customer replied to Luton’s tweet with ‘Worst airport ever’ and another called the country ‘a joke’.

The RAF also had to halt flights at Brize Norton, its largest UK air base, as its runway also melted. Experts warn that more disruptions to both flights and other forms of transport will occur due to the extreme weather, with today predicted to be even hotter than yesterday, with Brits being warned to stay home and do ‘as little as possible’.

Leading scientists have said that this kind of heat will become increasingly common due to climate change. So, although Britain’s infrastructure (and population) were not designed for this type of weather, we might find ourselves having to adapt to it over the coming years. Hopefully we will all become a bit less sweaty.

Check out some of the best reactions to the heatwave.

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