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Southwest grappling with delays, cancellations caused by lightning strike at Phoenix airport


Lightning struck a generator at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport Thursday, taking down Southwest Airlines’ computer server and canceling hundreds of flights. 

The server shutdown grounded Southwest flights at Phoenix, with the domino effect hitting the airline’s flights at other airports throughout the country.

Southwest canceled 356 flights on Thursday, with 1,734 more flights delayed, according to the Daily Mail. Passengers were left with suddenly changed flights and lost baggage as Southwest tried to handle the chaos.

The aftershocks continued Friday, with Southwest canceling 114 flights as of early afternoon and 800, or 20%, delayed, according to FlightAware.

Southwest “resumed operations after a brief ground stop while we worked to restore connectivity to some local systems that were affected by thunderstorms,” according to a spokesperson who spoke with Travel + Leisure. 

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