LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — More than 30 flights — most of them Southwest Airlines flights — were canceled this morning as passengers remained stranded after a frustrating weekend at McCarran International Airport.
The Associated Press reported on Monday that Southwest canceled about 360 flights nationwide and 1,000 others were delayed
The widespread interruption in service began shortly after the pilots union asked a federal court on Friday to block the airline’s order that all employees get vaccinated against COVID-19. But both the company and the union said employees are not conducting a sickout to protest the order.
Southwest canceled more than 1,900 flights nationwide over the weekend, according to AP.
“Oh, man, to put it lightly … it’s torture,” said passenger Jeremy Walsh.
“I hate to complain because I’m sure things are worse for others, but I mean Southwest obviously canceled flights last minute. I guess they couldn’t get crew in,” Walsh said.
Passengers were filling in the blanks as the airline continued to blame the cancellations on severe weather in other parts of the country and an “air traffic management” program.
The airline was issuing travel vouchers for stranded passengers.
We found frustrated and stranded passengers at the baggage claim area on Sunday. Many of those left behind told us they couldn’t get flights home until Tuesday at the earliest.
Other airlines are booked solid, and some flights were triple the price people had originally paid.
“It’s got to be a terrible burden and a terrible inconvenience for folks,” said passenger Michael Tino. “I’m exhausted. This bag weighs about 60 pounds I would estimate. It’s been no easy bed of roses for me.
The Federal Aviation Administration tweeted there were now FAA staffing shortages affecting air traffic control.
“Some airlines continue to experience scheduling challenges due to aircraft and crews being out of place,” the tweet said.
Walsh told us the earliest flight he could get to Pittsburgh wasn’t until Thursday. He had to take a flight to Cincinnati on Wednesday and then drive from there. He got a $200 voucher from Southwest Airlines.
Other passengers said they tried to take a rental car to a nearby airport, such as Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), but they had trouble with that, too.