ST. LOUIS – Southwest Airlines is resuming operations after it asked the Federal Aviation Administration to issue a nationwide ground stop Tuesday afternoon.
Southwest issued a statement explaining they are working to get back to normal operations as soon as possible.
“Southwest is in the process of resuming normal operations after a brief pause in our flight activity resulting from intermittent performance issues with our network connectivity Tuesday afternoon. Our Teams are working quickly to minimize flight disruptions and Customer impact. We appreciate our Customers’ patience as we work to get them to their destinations. We ask that travelers use Southwest.com to check flight status or consult a Southwest Airlines Customer Service Agent at the airport for assistance with travel needs.”
“Today, we’ve proactively canceled roughly 500 flights due to the outage, and we’re working with those Customers to get them to their destinations as quickly as possible.”Southwest
“Oh, we’re delayed an hour, we get to sit here longer, an hour’s okay,” Judi Nguyen said as she waited to travel back to Houston after visiting St. Louis.
Tuesday was the second day in a row the company delayed or cancelled flights due to a technical issue.
“It’s pretty typical, pretty typical,” Mary Peeks said. Her flight traveling to St. Louis the other day was also delayed, she said.
According to Flight Aware, a site that tracks flights worldwide, nearly half of Southwest’s flights Tuesday were delayed, about 500 of them canceled.
At St. Louis-Lambert International Airport, 14 Southwest flights were canceled and 65 delayed on Tuesday.
“I had a flight at 4:40 and I got here and I looked at my phone and I got a notice saying that flight was cancelled and the next available flight is at 9:05,” Jennifer Davey said. She was supposed to travel to Chicago for work.
Her delay was so long, she was deciding to leave the airport to catch her daughter’s softball game, and then return back to the airport to catch her flight.
Some passengers waited nearly 12 hours for their delayed flights.
“We were vacationing in the Ozarks with some family great week, but then I needed to get back this morning, that didn’t happen, everything got cancelled,” Andrew Hawkins said. He was supposed to fly home to Denver Tuesday morning around 11 a.m., but his flight was delayed until 9 p.m.
“I fly Southwest all the time and I love Southwest. I will be patient with whatever’s going on,” Davey said. “You can’t control it.”
Many passengers looked on the bright side of the delays.
“We’re going to visit our youngest daughter and her three kids,” Jen Jensen said. She and her husband, Gary, were waiting to board their delayed flight to California to visit family. On the brighter side of the delay, Gary said their daughter won’t have to sit in traffic to pick them up from the airport.
“It’ll probably be easier for her because now it’ll be almost 9 o’clock when she has to drive to the airport in Oakland to get us,” Gary Jensen said.
“I just turned 80 so I don’t have to worry about a thing,” Jen Jensen said with a smile.