Technical problems affected Southwest Airlines passengers this week. On Monday, Southwest’s third-party weather data provider experienced intermittent performance issues preventing Southwest to have pertinent information on its flights. 1,541 flights from the airline were delayed on Monday. In a statement, Southwest Airlines said that “while the vendor worked to restore connectivity, we implemented a ground stop to protect the safety of our crews and customers”.
Southwest also reported that they have to cancel 500 flights or 15% of their scheduled flights after a second glitch. According to the company on Tuesday, they’ve experienced a network connectivity issue that affected their reservation system.
Southwest even asked the Federal Aviation Administration to issue a nationwide ground stop that would prevent their planes from flying as the company resolved the issue. The connectivity issue caused delays of 900 to 1,300 flights. FAA lifted the ground stop and flights resumed after an hour.
In a statement, the airlines said that they are “in the process of investigating the root cause of each event to determine the reason behind the technology issue”. However, Southwest believes that both technical issues are not connected.
Technical Issues From Delta and Alaska Airlines
Southwest wasn’t the only airline that suffered from technical problems on Monday. Both Delta and Alaska Airlines also had computer issues that prevented both airlines to sell tickets to travelers. Delta advised customers to use the Fly Delta app and the company’s reservation call center instead of their website.
Passengers expressed their frustration over delays and demanded answers on social media. Some passengers even waited for hours on the plane because of the weather system outage.
Increased Demand in Domestic Flights
The technical issues happened amidst a busy time for the airline industry. This summer season, the airline industry’s numbers are looking up. Travel demand picks up as the number of fully vaccinated individuals in the US increases every day. The FAA now regularly records more than a million passengers traveling by air daily.