Hundreds Of Southwest Airlines Flights Delayed Due To Technical Glitch

Hundreds Of Southwest Airlines Flights Delayed Due To Technical Glitch
N7716A PDX ERIC SALARD / Flickr CC BY-SA 2.0
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Hundreds of Southwest Airlines flights have been delayed because of technical glitches, the company announced. Due to the problem, the staff is checking in some customers manually, causing long lines.


In a statement, the airline company said, “We apologize for the extra effort and any delayed arrival of passengers and their baggage.” It added that it was working to rectify the problem. Southwest apologized the delay on Twitter, saying, “We apologize for this morning’s technical issues. We are working to restore service to our Customers, and we appreciate your patience.”

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Travelers are being requested to arrive at the airport at least two hours before their scheduled departures. They are also being asked to print out their boarding passes and tags for luggage using airport kiosks. The technical issues, that began Sunday, continued to persist through the evening.

The Southwest terminal at the Los Angeles International Airport was crowded with people waiting to be issued handwritten tickets, as reported by KABC-TV. As many as 450 flights across the country had been delayed as of 6:30 p.m. – this constitutes to roughly 13 percent of the company’s 3,600 flights scheduled for the day. Spokeswoman Michelle Agnew said that majority of the delays were for less than 30 minutes.

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While no determination has been made as to what caused the issue, or how long it would take to be fixed, Spokesman Brad Hawkins said there was “absolutely no indication now” that a breach into the system was the reason for the delay. Customers who had downloaded their tickets on their mobile phones had to stand in long queues.

E.J. Schultz, a reporter for Ad Age who was traveling from Chicago’s Midway International Airport, said the company should have informed their travelers to print out their boarding passes before arriving at the airport. “If everyone had done that, it would’ve saved so much time,” he said.

Another traveler, Emily Mitnick, flying to Detroit from Denver International Airport, missed her 10 a.m. flight despite parking her car around 8 a.m., as reported by CBS News. Almost 1,000 people were standing in line at the check in for boarding passes, and a couple hundred people were waiting in the curb-side check in. It was 10:15 a.m. by the time Mitnick got in line for security. “The clock was ticking and the flight took off,” she said.

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The technical issues and long lines were reported by some people on Southwest’s Facebook page.

According to Dallas Morning News, there have been reports of other airlines experiencing issues as well. American Airlines experienced a computer failure last month, which caused halting of flights to three of its largest United States destinations for nearly two hours. United Airlines’ website also didn’t function for in excess of two hours.