Leah Blaine and her family were sitting on a plane in Hawaii’s Kahului Airport for five hours before they were informed that their Maui flight to Dallas had been canceled due to the FAA outage that impacted flights across the country on Wednesday, Blaine tells CNN.
Blaine’s final destination was getting back to Kansas City after her flight to Dallas. She was informed around 10 p.m. local time Tuesday that her flight was unable to depart and would be delayed.
“At first, they told us it was an American Airlines computer error, but recently they came on the PA and told us it is a FAA issue, and that planes were grounded all over,” Blaine said.
Blaine said passengers were given the option to disembark and wait in the airport, but she chose to stay on the plane since she was traveling with younger passengers who were already asleep.
“My daughter is asleep on my shoulder, so we chose to stay on the airplane.” Blaine said. “I feel bad for the flight attendants they have been doing the best they can to make sure we have water and food.”
Five hours after Blaine’s flight was initially scheduled to take off, the family was then informed that the flight had been canceled altogether. “They said the flight timed out while waiting for the FAA system to come back on,” Blaine said.
After announcing the flight cancellation, the airline returned the family’s checked luggage and is assisting the family with trying to find a hotel they can stay in, Blaine said. “At first, they said hotel rooms were all full. Now they’ve sent us to the ticket counter to try to figure it out.”
CNN reached out to American Airlines for a comment.