Delta Air Lines operations in Atlanta have returned to normal after Sunday’s crippling power outage as the carrier worked Tuesday to reunite passengers with their bags.
The world’s busiest airport was plunged into chaos and made global headlines when power was cut off for almost 11 hours on Sunday due to an underground fire.
Delta said Tuesday operations in Atlanta were seeing an on-time arrival rate of 90 per cent on Tuesday after the outage caused the cancellation of more than 1400 flights over Sunday and Monday.
“While Delta’s operations are back to normal, the airline continues to make progress in reuniting customers affected by the outage with their checked luggage,’’ the airline said on its website. “Baggage services were disabled by the power failure.
“As of Tuesday afternoon, just 1 percent of bags that needed to be transferred to customers outside of Atlanta remained, and approximately 800 local bags were left to be delivered to their Atlanta-based owners.”
The carrier has set up a dedicated phone line to help customers affected by the power outage retrieve their checked and it is allowing customers affected by the outage to make a one-time change to flights.
Georgia Power continues to investigate the outage, which it has described as an “anomaly”. and says it is moving to ensure it is not repeated.
The fault was traced to a fire in an underground facility that also damaged two sub-stations serving the airport, including the back-up facility.
The blackout prompted the Federal Aviation Administration to declare a ground stop at the airport, preventing Atlanta-bound flights from taking off or those already en-route to be diverted.
About 30,000 people in the terminal were affected by the outage and local authorities opened a convention center to accommodate people stranded overnight.
The Department of Homeland Security said it did not believe the outage was the result of a physical or cyber-attack.
The airport was lucky in one respect: the outage happened before the busiest travel days in the hectic Christmas period.