FAA Says Outage at Memphis Airport Caused by Downed AT&T Line

WASHINGTON - The Federal Aviation Administration says AT&T manages the telephone line that went down at a Memphis air traffic control center causing nationwide airline delays Tuesday.

Acting FAA Administrator Bobby Sturgell said the communication equipment failure was a "BellSouth/AT&T problem."

He told Congress yesterday that the agency is working with the company to address the issue.

AT&T issued a statement saying it was an equipment failure and that it's under investigation.

The communications failure limited the center's ability to talk to flights passing through its airspace and to other air traffic control facilities for about three hours.  It shut down all airline traffic within 250 miles of Memphis.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)