US Transportation Department Warns Southwest Airline After Post-Christmas Travel Disaster

Written by Reananda Hidayat Permono Completed Master of Science - MS, Petroleum Geology from Curtin University, Perth, Australia.

Southwest Airlines’ operational meltdown put the company under serious scrutiny, including from the US Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg.

Buttigieg spoke directly to Bob Jordan, Southwest CEO, about the thousands of canceled flights with no indication of when passengers can rebook.

Nearly all of the 2,640 canceled flights made for Wednesday belong to Southwest. All other airlines together account for only 155 of those cancellations.

According to the FlightAware website, almost 3,200 flights within, into, or out of the US have been canceled for Tuesday.

Around 2,680 canceled flights belong to Southwest, almost two-thirds of all its flights for Tuesday.

For comparison, competitor United Airlines only had 3% of its flights canceled, and Alaska Airlines had 10%.

Denver International Airport was hugely affected by those cancellations, followed by Chicago Midway International,

Harry Reid International Airport (Las Vegas), Baltimore/Washington International, Dallas Love Field, and Nashville International.

Southwest Airlines blamed the post-Christmas travel disaster on aggressive flight scheduling, winter storm delays, and outdated infrastructure.

Buttigieg told CEO Jordan to proactively offer refunds to impacted passengers without them having to ask.

He even told CNN that the Department of Transportation is prepared to pursue fines against Southwest if the company fails to meet its legal obligations.

After all, Southwest has warned that today’s delays and cancellations may continue for several days.

Therefore, customers need to book another airline’s flight as soon as possible since every airline is jam-packed at the moment.

Designed by Alexander Rabu