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Alleged DUI crash delayed, canceled flights at Sacramento airport, CHP says

A car crash Saturday night cut fiber optic cables providing internet to the airport, an airport spokesperson said.


The endless wraparound lines and roughly 20 canceled flights at the Sacramento International Airport on Sunday were caused by a crash involving an alleged DUI driver, California Highway Patrol officials confirmed.

AT&T officials confirmed that a car crash on Saturday night cut fiber optic cables in the area, which was the source of the 23 hour long internet outage.

Both United and Southwest had to use backup connections Sunday afternoon to help passengers board their flights. AT&T's fix didn't happen until late Sunday night, even then it was going to take time for everything to get up and running at full capacity. 

The connection issues stalled holiday travelers as they waited for hours at the airport. Airport staff were frantically trying to check people onto their flights manually and pass out handwritten boarding passes. 

"It was just lines on lines on lines," said Jenny Lindsay, one of the many travelers forced to idle at the airport. "I had to walk around a couple times just to figure out where the end of the line was.”

Despite hours long waits, a flight delay might have made you one of the lucky ones. Some flights were canceled on one of the busiest holiday travel weekends of the year.

About 20 Southwest flights were canceled. Mott said that Southwest was the only airline that canceled flights, primarily because of the high amount of flights the airline had scheduled for Sunday. Mott said that all airlines at the airport experienced some delays. 

"We understand that it’s frustrating," said Mott. "This is a busy time to travel and we’re really... not in control of this. It’s an AT&T issue. We’re doing everything we can to alleviate the additional stress that our passengers are feeling.”

Despite the setback for holiday travel, some at the airport are still trying to persevere.

“There’s nothing we can do about it, so it’s the holidays and I’m just trying to keep a stiff upper lip...,” said George Tripp, a traveler at the airport.

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Mott said that arrivals were not impacted by the outage and local weather did not affect the flights in or out of the airport.



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Internet outage stalls holiday travelers at Sacramento International Airport