BAA loses up to £6m a day from airport closures

AIRPORTS operator BAA yesterday said that the flight ban sparked by the volcanic ash cloud is costing it between £5m and £6m a day.

The operator runs six airports in the UK, including Heathrow and Stansted but all have remained out of action since air traffic control group NATS closed British air space to commercial aircraft last Thursday.

A statement from the group – owned by Spanish infrastructure company Ferrovial – said: “BAA entered this period of flight suspensions with sufficient available funds to mitigate the closure of British air space for a considerable amount of time.”

It added: “Right now, we don’t think the airports’ closure will have a material impact on our regulated airports’ abilities to finance their activities.”

Airline BA has asked for compensation from the European Union and british government for its losses – estimated at around the same rate as BAA’s – over the grounding of flights.