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FAA: ‘Technical Issues’ Temporarily Ground Flights at SoCal Airports

All flights were temporarily grounded at Southern California airports on Wednesday afternoon due to ground stop issued by the FAA because of technical problems at a regional air traffic control facility.

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A file photo of Terminal 3 at Los Angeles International Airport. (Credit: KTLA)

The “ground stop” was announced by LAX on Twitter at 2:13 p.m., and the airport referred questions to the Federal Aviation Administration, which issued the order.

The FAA said it was “gradually restoring the system” at about 3:30 p.m.

The stop was “due to computer issues,” Los Angeles International Airport stated on Twitter.

Flights were also grounded at Bob Hope Airport in Burbank, John Wayne Airport in Santa Ana, Long Beach Airport and Ontario International Airport, representatives of those airports confirmed.

The airports began reporting the ground stop had been lifted shortly after 3:20 p.m.

FAA spokesman Ian Gregor initially said he was working to gather details and recommended passengers check fly.faa.gov. The website showed delays of similar length at LAX, Las Vegas airport and Salt Lake City International Airport.

Later, in an emailed statement issued at about 3:30 p.m., Gregor said the system was being restored.

“The FAA’s Los Angeles Center air traffic control facility experienced technical issues and stopped accepting additional flights into the airspace managed by the facility for about an hour,” Gregor said. “Some flights were diverted and the agency issued a nationwide groundstop for flights heading into the airspace managed by the center. The agency is gradually restoring the system.”

At LAX, about 27 inbound flights were diverted, 27 were cancelled and 212 flights were delayed, airport spokeswoman Nancy Castles said in a statement at 8:30 p.m.

More than 30 departing flights that were held on the ground — some for up to two hours — had been released and were expected to depart with an additional one-hour delay, Castles said.

A total of 23 departing flights had to be cancelled, she said.

Airports and the FAA advised travelers to check with airlines for flight status updates.

The entire Los Angeles flight center had a ground stop in effect due to an “air traffic processing computer issue,” according to Victor Gill of Bob Hope Airport, who called such orders “very rare.”

When a ground stop is issued, flights bound for the affected airport are held at their departing airport, according to the FAA website.

KTLA’s Jennifer Thang and Amrah Khan contributed to this article.