Thousands of Passengers Stranded After Delta Flights Are Grounded Worldwide Due to System Outage

NEW YORK - JULY 22:  Delta Airlines planes sit at Terminal 4 at John F. Kennedy Airport July 22, 2014 in New York City. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has halted all flights from the U.S. to Tel Aviv, Israel following a rocket attack near Ben Gurion International Airport. (PHOTO CREDIT: Eric Thayer/Getty Images)
NEW YORK – JULY 22: Delta Airlines planes sit at Terminal 4 at John F. Kennedy Airport July 22, 2014 in New York City. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has halted all flights from the U.S. to Tel Aviv, Israel following a rocket attack near Ben Gurion International Airport. (PHOTO CREDIT: Eric Thayer/Getty Images)

Tens of thousands of people were stranded Monday after Delta Air Lines flights were grounded around the globe due to a system outage.

Delta said that systems were back online by 8:40 a.m. ET, but warned disruptions would continue amid a “limited” resumption of departures.

“Customers heading to the airport should expect delays and cancellations,” Delta warned in a statement. “While inquiries are high and wait times are long, our customer service agents are doing everything they can to assist.”

By 10:40 a.m. ET, the airline had canceled 300 flights and was sending 800 of its daily 6,000 flights on their way. It remained to be seen how large a portion of the carrier’s daily schedule would ultimately be canceled Monday.

The airline also advised fliers there may be “some lag time in the display of accurate flight status at delta.com, the Fly Delta App and from Delta representatives on the phone and in airport.”

As for the cause of the snafu, Delta pointed to an overnight power outage in its hometown of Atlanta that it said “impacted Delta computer systems and operations worldwide, resulting in flight delays.”

However, Georgia Power disputed that assessment.

“We believe that Delta experienced an equipment failure overnight that caused a power outage,” Craig Bell, a spokesman for Georgia Power, told USA TODAY. “Our crews have been out there all morning closely with Delta and their team as they repair the affected equipment. We don’t believe it was a Georgia Power issue.”

Regardless of the cause, the glitch knocked Delta’s automated check-in kiosks offline, forcing agents at ticket counters to manually check-in some passengers.

“Large-scale cancellations are expected today,” Delta said in an earlier statement from 7:30 a.m. ET.

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SOURCE: USA Today, Ben Mutzabaugh and Bart Jansen