NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Air travel is getting back to normal at New York City airports Saturday following a flight fiasco.
As CBS 2’s Lou Young reported, planes and flight crews are still trying to get into position following a suicide attempt that sparked a fire at an FAA air traffic control center near Chicago on Friday.READ MORE: State Trial For Three Ex-Officers Charged In George Floyd’s Death Postponed Until 2022
As of Saturday morning, more than 200 flights have been canceled out of Chicago. There have only been a few cancellations reported at LaGuardia and JFK airports.
“We waited on that line for two hours. The staff was very nice, but they said there’s nothing they can do for us today,” said Randi Law on Friday.
While Chicago’s O’Hare International and Midway airports were shut down, people tried shifting from airport to airport, hoping to get where they needed to go.
“We were going to LaGuardia and on the way it was canceled so we stopped here to see if we could get a flight,” Brooks Berkley said at Newark Liberty International Airport.
But it was not in the cards for Berkley, and many others who did find alternative routes discovered them to be too expensive to consider, Young reported.READ MORE: Religious Violence Spreads Across Israel As Death Toll From Gaza Airstrikes Mounts
“I just got a flight to Minneapolis. It was a thousand dollars one way, which is ridiculous,” said Lisa Small.
The chaos was allegedly caused by an apparently suicidal subcontractor for the FAA, who used gasoline to start the fire and alerted the world to his actions on his Facebook account.
The suspect — identified by the FBI as Brian Howard, 36, of the Chicago suburb of Naperville — has been hospitalized after slashing himself. He has been charged in a criminal complaint with destruction of aircraft or aircraft facilities, a felony.
The FAA is now running Chicago’s air traffic information through four other centers in the Midwest, and flights are arriving and leaving Chicago at a reduced rate.
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