Flightradar24, the online platform that shows real-time commercial aircraft flight tracking information on a map, crashed on Thursday after it saw 10 to 20 times higher traffic following the Russian military operation on Ukraine and subsequent closure of the Ukranian airspace.“Due to extremely heavy load, some users may experience slowness or temporary connection issues accessing Flightradar24. We're working on increasing available performance now,” Flightradar24 tweeted.
We are still working hard on increasing the capacity, but the very big international interest generate 10-20 times higher traffic than normally, which is hard to handle.
— Flightradar24 (@flightradar24) February 24, 2022
“We are still working hard on increasing the capacity, but the very big international interest generate 10-20 times higher traffic than normally, which is hard to handle.”
Rapid developments unfolded following the Russian action, with Ukraine announcing closure of its airspace. Following this, an Air India aircraft flying to Ukraine to bring home Indians turned back around.
Even before the airspace was closed, a number of international carriers had cancelled their flights to Ukraine over security concerns sparked by the Russian troop build-up on the country’s border.
Russian President Vladimir Putin announced the military operation early Thursday, leaving other nations stunned. "I have made the decision of a military operation," he said in a surprise statement on television.
In a televised address, Putin accused the US and its allies of ignoring Russia's demand to prevent Ukraine from joining NATO and offer Moscow security guarantees. He said Russia doesn't intend to occupy Ukraine but will move to demilitarise it and bring those who committed crimes to justice. As Putin spoke before dawn, big explosions were heard in Kyiv, Kharkiv, Odessa and other cities across Ukraine.
Ukraine's Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba accused Russia's leader President Vladimir Putin of launching a "full-scale invasion".US President Joe Biden said the "world will hold Russia accountable" over its attack against Ukraine that he warned will cause "catastrophic loss of life." In a statement issued shortly Putin announced the start of military operations in Ukraine, Biden said he would address the US public on Thursday to outline the "consequences" for Russia, calling the attack "unprovoked and unjustified."