- Southwest Airlines canceled more than 1,000 flights on Sunday, leaving customers stranded.
- The cancellations were caused by air traffic control problems and weather, according to the airline.
- 1,007 flights were canceled and 383 have been delayed on Sunday, according to the flight tracking website Flight Aware.
Southwest Airlines canceled more than 1,000 flights, leaving hundreds of customers stranded.
The cancellations started on Saturday and went into Sunday and were caused by air traffic control problems and weather, according to a statement released by the airline on Twitter.
1,007 flights were canceled and 383 have been delayed on Sunday morning as of publishing, according to the flight tracking website Flight Aware. 808 flights, nearly 25% of the airline's total flights that day, were canceled by the airline Saturday. Southwest also experienced almost 1,200 delays on Saturday as well, Flight Aware reported.
"We experienced weather challenges in our Florida airports at the beginning of the weekend, challenges that were compounded by unexpected air traffic control issues in the same region, triggering delays and prompting significant cancellations for us beginning Friday evening," Southwest told Insider in an email. "We've continued diligent work throughout the weekend to reset our operation with a focus on getting aircraft and Crews repositioned to take care of our Customers."
-Southwest Airlines (@SouthwestAir) October 9, 2021
However, several Southwest passengers have voiced concerns online that the delays are the result of pilots and crewmembers striking after the airline issued a coronavirus vaccine mandate for its employees. Southwest did not respond to Insider's request to comment on the claims of the rumored strike online.
"ATC issues and disruptive weather have resulted in a high volume of cancellations throughout the weekend while we work to recover our operation," Southwest Tweeted to concerned customers on Saturday. "We appreciate your patience as we accommodate affected Customers, and Customer Service wait times are longer than usual."
Recently airlines like JetBlue, Spirit, and American Airlines have come under fire by customers after issuing mass delays and cancellations in the US. Last month, United Airlines was fined $1.9 million by the Department of Transportation for keeping thousands of passengers stuck on planes for hours, in violation of federal rules, Insider reported. It was the largest penalty of its kind, according to Reuters.