EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — Southwest Airlines put a temporary hold on flights Tuesday morning, April 18, due to technical difficulties.
At the El Paso International Airport, Southwest passengers said their flights were delayed but were not canceled.
“We got delayed by almost an hour. I personally thought we were going to get something out of it but we’re not going to get anything out of it and we are going to end up getting home later than we expected,” said Issac Ochoa, a Southwest Airlines passenger, said.
Ochoa said he wasn’t informed about his delay until he got to the airport before his flight.
Tuesday morning, Southwest Airlines asked the FAA to put a pause on all departures.
“They didn’t tell us anything. All we got was a notification that our flight has been delayed. And after that, we have not heard anything about it. Now we don’t have anything to do and all we are expected to do is wait.” Ochoa said.
Ochoa said he remembers the “drama” Southwest Airlines had during the holidays in 2022 canceling over 16,000 flights. During the holidays, flights were canceled because of bad weather and Southwest’s crew-scheduling system becoming overwhelmed. Those cancellations cost the airline more than $1 billion and are being investigated by the Transportation Department.
“We’re just stuck here for a couple of hours.” Ochoa said.
The pause on the delays was lifted around 10 a.m. Tuesday.
Southwest says a firewall supplied by a vendor went down early Tuesday, and the connection to some operational data was lost. The airline went on Twitter to apologize to travelers whose flights were delayed.
On the Southwest website, they said they are allowing those affected by the delays to rebook within 14 days of their original travel date.