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April 5, 2017: Delta cancels 300 flights due to thunderstorm

April 5, 2017: Delta cancels 300 flights due to thunderstorm

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Old Apr 14, 17, 11:51 pm   -   Wikipost
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Last edit by: Renes Points
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Great explanation about Crew Tracking & Scheduling and what went wrong: Post #590

[Feel free to edit / add to the timeline of DL events.]

First waver ATL only and only 5-7 and by 11th: https://web.archive.org/web/20170406...perations.html

Second waver "all" hubs and 5-9 and by 16th: https://web.archive.org/web/20170407...perations.html

April 6th COO Gil West apology and blames "unprecedented" ( 5 hour ) storm / weather: http://news.delta.com/chief-operatin...cedented-storm

April 7 & 8 Five things to know list: http://news.delta.com/5-things-custo...tions-saturday

April 7th In midst of service fail Delta devalues SkyMiles with partners: http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/delta...000-miles.html

April 8th updates on operations: http://news.delta.com/operational-re...ontinues-today

April 12th will be $DAL earnings live and should yield more info: http://ir.delta.com/news-and-events/...s/default.aspx

April 9, 11:40 PM (EDT): What appears to be the last cancellation of the meltdown was made for DL2682/10Apr BOS-LGA (717 aircraft)

April 11th - Delta begins to pay out compensation for impacted travelers: http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/delta...pensation.html

Other coverage of the event:

Pilots board relating to this epic fail: https://www.airlinepilotforums.com/d...-atl-irop.html

Factors compounding delays/cancellations:
  • Weather in ATL April 5
  • DL terminating interline with AA
  • Delta's systems crashing/overloaded
  • DL's crew scheduling system crashed [rumor?]
  • Rumored short-term power outage in ATL A concourse caused by airport construction some time around Tuesday-Wednesday

Current delay statistics: Flightaware's live flight delay and cancellation statistics

News coverage:

BuzzFeedNews: Delta Has Canceled Thousands Of Flights And Everyone Is In Hell - No spring break is safe. (Posted on April 7, 2017, at 11:59 a.m.)

The Southampton Press: Cancelled Flight Dashes Disney Dream For Hampton Bays Marching Band (April 7, 2017 11:30 AM)

USA Today: Thousands of Delta flights canceled days after storms (Published 8:53 a.m. ET April 8, 2017)

CNN - Delta meltdown: Pilots are on hold, too (Updated 6:52 PM ET, Sat April 8, 2017)

The Wall Street Journal - Delta Struggles to Recover From Last Weeks Storms (April 9, 2017 12:23 p.m. ET)

AJC.com: Delta woes stretch into Sunday with more cancellations (11:57 a.m. Sunday, April 9, 2017)

AJC.com: Why one day of thunderstorms turned into a five-day Delta meltdown (12:01 p.m Sunday, April 9, 2017)

Detroit Free Press: Headaches continue for Delta fliers in Detroit (Published 2:26 p.m. ET April 9, 2017 Updated 5:54 p.m. ET April 9, 2017)

CNN - Delta tries to 'normalize' as flight cancellations continue (Updated 4:06 PM ET, Sun April 9, 2017)

New York Times: Storms, Though Over, Still Disrupt Delta Flights (APRIL 9, 2017)

NewsChannel5.com - Nashville Man's Body Stranded After Delta Flight Chaos (4:24 PM April 9, 2017)

CBS North Carolina: Raleigh parents upset after sons body stranded during Delta flight chaos (April 9, 2017, 8:14 pm Updated: April 10, 2017, 5:35 am)

AJC.com: Delta reassures customers as delays continue through weekend (5:53 p.m Sunday, April 9, 2017)

AJC.com: Hundreds of stranded bags left at Hartsfield-Jackson in aftermath of Delta flight cancellations (9:29 a.m. Monday, April 10, 2017)

Bloomberg: Delta Delays Drag On, Testing Passengers' Patience (April 9, 2017, 4:10 PM EDT Updated On April 10, 2017, 10:13 AM EDT)

BuzzFeedNews: Delta Suffered "Failure of Crew Tracking Systems" During Cancelled Flight Fiasco - "I feel like we are lost in the system." (Originally posted on April 11, 2017, at 3:28 p.m. Updated on April 12, 2017, at 10:38 a.m. )

Reuters (posted on BusinessInsider): Delta's profit drops 36.3% (Apr. 12, 2017, 7:20 AM)

AJC.com - Accused child rapist caught at airport when flight is delayed (7:39 p.m Thursday, April 13, 2017)
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Old Apr 12, 17, 9:18 am
  #751  
 
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An article about a school group who got caught up in the meltdown:
Fifteen High School students got their 10-day, four-city trip to Europe stopped in its tracks before they even left BWI on Friday.
and
Clarksburg High School teacher Rachel Clements who is traveling with the students says "A lot of these kids worked multiple jobs to pay for this trip and they missed about 25% of it so far."
Link to the full story: WJLA - Channel 7 in Washington DC: High School trip to Europe impacted by Delta storm delays
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Old Apr 12, 17, 9:20 am
  #752  
 
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How likely will DL cover my expenses to get home? I'm out well over $600 to stay at a sleazy motel, endless taxi fares, buy a one-way ticket on Frontier, and then rent a car to get home. DL flight was scheduled at noon on Friday, finally cancelled at 1AM Saturday. I should add that when the flight cancellation announcement was made, we were all informed that they are unable to re-book and that there are no hotel accommodations available (Las Vegas...). This was actually true - after receiving my luggage 2hrs later (3AM), it took me THREE full hours to locate a motel room.
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Old Apr 12, 17, 9:23 am
  #753  
 
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Delta said it cancelled about 4,000 flights

Reuter's coverage of the earning call includes these details:
Delta said it cancelled about 4,000 flights earlier this month due to severe weather in Atlanta, and it would reduce its second-quarter pre-tax income by $125 million.
That is the first time I've the 4,000 number used to describe the amount of flights cancelled.

Link to article: Reuters (posted on BusinessInsider): Delta's profit drops 36.3% (Apr. 12, 2017, 7:20 AM)
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Old Apr 12, 17, 9:25 am
  #754  
 
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This would be a great time for travel insurance companies like Allianz to advertise, but I haven't noticed anything.
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Old Apr 12, 17, 9:42 am
  #755  
 
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Originally Posted by RatherBeOnATrain View Post
Originally Posted by RatherBeOnATrain View Post
Reuter's coverage of the earning call includes these details:

That is the first time I've the 4,000 number used to describe the amount of flights cancelled.

Link to article: Reuters (posted on BusinessInsider): Delta's profit drops 36.3% (Apr. 12, 2017, 7:20 AM)
I hope both of these and the internal memo mentioned can be held up and Delta needs to step up!

I fully expect the initial reply to my long laundry list to be "Sorry we can't do anything about the weather". And I'll reply and link them to the multiple stories out there now.

Luckily after 13 hours at the ATL airport in 3 different SkyClubs chasing flights around I could just Uber home. ALL the hotels were booked well before I realized something was going on with my flights.
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Old Apr 12, 17, 11:04 am
  #756  
 
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From the AJC:
CEO Ed Bastian made his first public remarks since the cancellations last week during the companys quarterly financial update Wednesday.
and
There were seven different thunderstorm cells that happened at a rapid-fire basis starting from early morning to evening last Wednesday, Bastian said. We had the virtual shutdown of Atlanta for the better part of an entire day, combined with busy spring break travel that left little room to rebook customers.
and
IT systems were working throughout, according to Bastian.

It wasnt a question that it didnt work. It worked and it worked as designed. It got overwhelmed, Bastian said.
Link to the full article: AJC.com: Delta pledges deep dive into causes of mass cancellations, CEO apologizes (11:19 a.m. Wednesday, April 12, 2017)
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Old Apr 12, 17, 11:51 am
  #757  
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Wow so how can he claim that systems "were working throughout"? Flights vanishing from the app, unable to use the rebooking tool online or through the app is considered working? How about when SNAP went down and the agents had to use DLTerm for a while? That is working as designed?

If its overwhelmed and not responding then that is effectively down.

I personally saw multiple flights canceled due to lack of crew after sitting for hours, and frustrated crew who didn't know where to go or said they couldn't get assigned to a flight even though they were available and waiting in ATL. One captain was making announcements to pax in the gate area and on his phone trying to get crew for his flight, but to no avail.
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Old Apr 12, 17, 12:05 pm
  #758  
 
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It just got overwhelmed. That means... it wasn't working.


That is called 'spin'.
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Old Apr 12, 17, 12:08 pm
  #759  
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Originally Posted by dinanm3atl View Post
It just got overwhelmed. That means... it wasn't working.


That is called 'spin'.
Perhaps the system needs to be re-accommodated.
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Old Apr 12, 17, 12:09 pm
  #760  
 
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Originally Posted by RatherBeOnATrain View Post
what a joke. If it got overwhelmed then it failed.

Compensation should be offered to all those affected.
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Old Apr 12, 17, 12:17 pm
  #761  
 
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I'll be interested to hear what type of comp (5k, 10k, 20k miles, refunds, credit) Delta doles out to people for this. I don't think the simple "it's weather related, deal with it" line is going to work. Too much coverage of the operational failures to simply blame weather.

I sent in a detailed explanation of my issues and delays Monday. I was relatively luck to only be 18 hours delayed to my destination. We will see if/what they offer.
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Old Apr 12, 17, 12:20 pm
  #762  
 
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An "overwhelmed" system is a broken system. He is acting as if weather is a new phenomena that they would have had no way to predict or expect. He also fails to account for the ability of the other airlines to not go into complete meltdown.
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Old Apr 12, 17, 12:54 pm
  #763  
 
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Originally Posted by jdrtravel View Post
An "overwhelmed" system is a broken system. He is acting as if weather is a new phenomena that they would have had no way to predict or expect. He also fails to account for the ability of the other airlines to not go into complete meltdown.
At the same airport no less... not as large an operation but still at the same airport.

And yes. If your system is overwhelmed it broke. If you overwhelm your dishwasher with too much stuff and it fails and floods your kitchen it broke.
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Old Apr 12, 17, 1:01 pm
  #764  
 
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Originally Posted by apodo77 View Post
what a joke. If it got overwhelmed then it failed.

Compensation should be offered to all those affected.
I have been waiting for the "Sorry for the Delay" email so I could voice my opinion. Just went to DL.com and sent in my complaint. My main complaints on Sunday's travel were...
(1) Conflicting information, My wife and I were getting text updates at different times and at times with different information. The app even showed different information.
(2) Lack of urgency by much of the DL staff. The RDU staff made no effort to turn a 2.5 hour late plane for the pax that had connections. 1.5 hours to turn a plane in RDU is bad by any standard. to add insult to injury the GA had no experience, couldn't drive the jet bridge for the incoming aircraft and then was overwhelmed with scanning tickets.

This was the poorest recovery from IRROPS I have ever seen, almost USAIR-esque.

Last edited by SYRRDU; Apr 13, 17 at 3:53 pm
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Old Apr 12, 17, 5:55 pm
  #765  
 
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Thousands of us were not just "inconvenienced and frustrated". This makes it sound as if we were just delayed a little bit and got cranky, as if we were little kids who should be more mature. I had about a thousand dollars of actual expense with no alternative due to being stranded in DC for four days with no housing. I also had to go back and forth to two airports in taxis while they canceled the flights they had confirmed me on. I lost two days of work, which is real damages that I will not recover short of an actual lawsuit which is just not worth pursuing given that I would have to lose even more time from work. We will see if they actually provide any real compensation.
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