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WestJet flights delayed due to system outage caused by train derailment

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"Intermittent issues" in a telecommunications system led to delayed WestJet flights in Canada and abroad Thursday morning, but the source of the problem is believed to have been key fiber lines damaged in a train derailment near Bassano.

Officials with the Calgary-based airline confirm to CTV News that a NAV Canada system outage has been restored but, as of 10 a.m., baggage check-in problems persisted in Calgary, Ottawa, Saskatoon and Halifax.

"An infrastructure outage is currently impacting WestJet’s airport check-in, flight planning and payment services on WestJet.com and continues to intermittently impact operations," said a WestJet spokesperson in a statement. "We are working to restore service and encourage guests to arrive early and check their flight status due to delays with the check-in process at the airport.

"We thank all guests for their patience as we continue to work towards resolving the issue."

NAV Canada confirms the disruption was with a telecommunications system of Zayo, a third-party provider.

"Ensuring the safe movement of air traffic in Canadian airspace is NAV Canada's top priority," said a NAV Canada spokesperson in a statement to CTV News. "As such, air traffic control will reduce the flow of departures and arrivals temporarily in some situations until the Zayo has restored service. Procedures are in place to assure safety of aircraft in our airspace.

"We regret the inconvenience to air carriers and their passengers due to this third-party outage. Passengers are encouraged to check with their airlines for specific details regarding flight delays and cancellations."

Zayo officials confirm the outage was the result of an unspecified train derailment on Wednesday that damaged fiber lines.

"Zayo is working on a swift restoration of service following the disruption of two key fiber lines managed by one of our underlying fiber providers in Canada, including an outage caused by a train derailment yesterday evening. We have rerouted a significant volume of traffic via other routes so that our customers can begin resuming normal operations. We regret the inconvenience this has caused for our customers and air passengers, and our top priority is the safety of everyone involved."

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