ST. LOUIS – On Sunday, staff at St. Louis-Lambert International Airport delivered Christmas gifts to anxious passengers, in the form of luggage.
“My dad lives here, so I was trying to spend Christmas with him, but it’s difficult when I have no clothes, and there (are) gifts in here as well,” Brittney Bess said.
A burst water pipe near the baggage carousel in Terminal 2 caused a massive backlog of bags.
“The whole terminal is just hundreds of bags on the floor everywhere. It’s like, roped off, there is people standing around, nobody knows what’s going on,” Bess shared. “Chaos. And there is no real system to this.”
Some people waited in line on the phone before heading to the airport.
“About two or three hours on hold, I found out my bag was here. Getting it was quick and painless, waiting for it was not,” Kortnee Virus said.
Other people waited in long lines at the airport in person.
“Two hours, but we’re almost there. We’re so close,” Ashley Krueger said. “Our flight never took off from St. Louis yesterday, so I’m pretty confident that it’s here, but we’re about to find out. We’ll see.”
Everyone hoped to find their bags in the sea of luggage.
“I lucked out. I have a sister, so I’m wearing her clothes right now. So, helpful, but all of the presents are in here. So, hopefully, we’ll still get a little bit of a Christmas tonight,” Virus said.
Airport staff advised travelers to call Southwest Airlines before heading to the airport to make sure their checked bags are there.