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Southwest Airlines cancels at least 64% flights Monday after massive disruption leaves customers stranded, call centers swamped

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Los Angeles – Last week’s winter travel turmoil is lingering like a hangover this week – and headaches are proportionate to migraines for Southwest Airlines and its frustrated passengers on Monday.

According to flight tracking website FlightAware, more than 3,500 flights inside and outside the United States had already been canceled by Monday afternoon, with nearly 5,000 delayed.

But the Southwest has a whopping share of them.

According to FlightAware, the Dallas-based airline has canceled more than half of its flights as of 3 p.m. ET Monday, totaling more than 2,600 flights. About 300 flights were canceled in half an hour on Monday afternoon.

On social media, customers are loudly complaining about long lines to talk to agents, problems with lost bags, long wait times, and busy signals on airline customer service phone lines.

Southern California Cancellation

About 100 Southwest flights had been canceled and another 28 delayed at Los Angeles International Airport as of Monday afternoon, according to FlightAware. By comparison, LAX had a total of 52 flights canceled from all other airlines.

At Hollywood Burbank Airport, 84 Southwest flights were canceled and 6 were delayed. By comparison, his only three other airline flights were canceled there.

“Network-wide chaos”

In a statement to CNN, Southwest Airlines said it was “experiencing disruptions across its network due to the lingering impact of the (winter storms) on its overall operations.”

Airports with the biggest problems include Denver, Las Vegas, Chicago Midway, Baltimore/Washington and Dallas Love Field operated by Southwest Airlines.

A call to Southwest customer service that CNN attempted Monday afternoon was unsuccessful, and customers couldn’t even stand in line to speak to a representative. Southwest told CNN he “has enough staff to answer the phone.”

The airline also states that “those whose flights have been canceled can either request a full refund or receive flight credits that do not expire.”

Meanwhile, the hard-hit Buffalo International Airport in western New York said in a recent tweet that it plans to resume passenger flights on Tuesday at 11 a.m. ET.

The temperature at the airport was 19 degrees Fahrenheit around 3:00 PM ET, with light snow falling on top of the large amount of snow already seen in the area.

Union officials representing Southwest Airlines’ crews blamed the airline for what they described as years of failure to modernize the system.

“It was devastating,” Southwest captain and union president Casey Murray told ABC News. “The Southwest is failing on all levels. As far as we were treated really bad I mean our processes, our IT and our infrastructure were not there to support our operations unfortunately our customers are bearing the brunt of it.”

“We have pilots, we have flight attendants who don’t have hotels, and we really don’t know where they are. was prepared, which is simply a failure of Southwest management.”

Read Southwest’s full statement below.

We are still experiencing disruptions across our network as winter storm Elliott is having a lingering impact across our operations. We are still working on it.

For customers with interrupted itineraries, we are re-accommodating as many customers as possible based on available space. If your flight is cancelled, you can request a full refund or receive flight credits that never expire. Information for customers with lost baggage can be found here: https://www.southwest.com/help/baggage/lost-damaged-baggage … You should contact the baggage service office at the airport where we operate. You can also talk to people. Please contact Southwest Customer Service.

The operational emergency you are referring to is a routine emergency sickness procedure (enacted in our DEN operations) …when that happens an employee calls in sick Parameters such as requesting a doctor’s note when returning to work are put in place. Ensuring customer reliability by ensuring the required number of available working staff.

What can stranded passengers do?

If you’re frustrated and left out and your efforts to contact a customer service agent are unsuccessful, the founder of Scott’s Cheap Flights suggests trying an international phone number.

“The main U.S. airline hotlines will be busy with rebookings for other passengers. To reach an agent immediately, call any of the airline’s dozens of international offices. said Scott Keyes.

“Agents can process bookings just like US-based agencies, but with very little wait to get through.”

To get the international numbers previously posted by Southwest, click here.

rough past week

The winter storm that hit the United States was ill-timed for travelers as flights over the Christmas week began to return to pre-pandemic levels.

According to FlightAware, 3,178 flights were canceled and 6,870 delayed over Christmas.

According to FlightAware, a total of 3,487 flights were canceled on Christmas Eve.

Friday was the worst day of the streak with 5,934 cancellations, while Thursday had almost 2,700 cancellations.

Across the eastern two-thirds of the country, the monstrous winter weather is expected to ease slowly this week.

The media player video above is from an earlier story.

ABC News and KABC reports contributed to this story.

The-CNN-Wire
& 2022 Cable News Network, Inc., a Warner Bros. Discovery Company. All rights reserved.

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