San Antonio travelers among millions delayed by FAA’s computer-related grounding of flights

Most early morning flight departures were canceled temporarily

SAN ANTONIO – Local travelers still may be feeling the impact of an outage within the Federal Aviation Administration’s computer system that led to the delay or cancellation of thousands of flights across the country.

The FAA announced Tuesday morning that it was grounding most departing flights until 8 a.m. Central time.

The FAA's grounding was lifted shortly before 8 a.m., allowing air travel to resume. (KSAT 12 News)

The halt in that air travel affected about 1,200 flights nationwide, including several in San Antonio.

“I was going to go home from here to Dallas and then to Beaumont, which is where I go to school,” Ivy Goodwin said.

Like many travelers at San Antonio International, she found herself with extra time on her hands and a lot of uncertainty in her mind.

In spite of the delays, airline employees encouraged travelers to conduct business as usual by passing through security and going to their gates. (KSAT 12 News)

Passengers were left wondering what would happen next.

“If we would’ve had a text before, we wouldn’t have had to rush to get here,” Loretta Dortch said.

She and her daughter, Jennifer Cunningham, were Montana-bound for a girls’ trip at a cabin in the woods.

“Whenever we fly together it’s something insane,” Cunningham said, also referencing a 2015 trip to Paris in which that city experienced a terrorist attack.

While stuck at the airport this time, they found all kinds of creative ways to occupy their time.

Airline employees, meanwhile, encouraged travelers to go about the normal routine of passing through security and waiting at the gates.

A statement issued by the San Antonio International Airport urged passengers to call their airlines for instruction before leaving home.

Shortly before 8 a.m., the FAA sent out a message via Twitter, announcing that the grounding was lifted and that air travel was resuming.

Still, some travelers worried that the delays it caused could mean more problems for them down the road.

“Once we get to Denver and then we go to Montana from there, so we’re hoping getting a connecting flight won’t be a problem,” Cunningham said.

While Goodwin wasn’t traveling quite as far—only to Beaumont--she shared the same concerns.

She decided to ground herself for one more day.

“I can get to Dallas, but there’s no guarantee that once I get there, I’m going to have a flight,” Goodwin said. “So I’m just going to go ahead and reschedule for tomorrow.”

About the Authors

Katrina Webber joined KSAT 12 in December 2009. She reports for Good Morning San Antonio. Katrina was born and raised in Queens, NY, but after living in Gulf Coast states for the past decade, she feels right at home in Texas. It's not unusual to find her singing karaoke or leading a song with her church choir when she's not on-air.

Azian Bermea is a photojournalist at KSAT.

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