In the midst of speculation, Southwest Airlines tries to explain the cancellation chaos.
Southwest Airlines said on Friday that the company’s recent wave of flight cancellations was due to a “operational issue” that occurred last Friday.
Thousands of flights were canceled throughout the weekend, and approximately a third of Southwest’s flight schedule was canceled on Sunday.
President and Chief Operating Officer Mike Van de Ven wrote on the airline’s website on Thursday that the disruption was “originally caused by weather and air traffic constraints that stopped our Florida operations for many hours.”
Van de Ven stated, “As a result, our aircraft and Crews were not in their pre-planned places to run our schedule on Saturday.”
“Unfortunately, the out-of-place aircraft and Crew resources resulted in more cancellations across our point-to-point network,” he continued.
Despite “widespread suspicions and speculation,” Van de Ven added that the airline’s problems during the weekend “weren’t a result of extraordinary Southwest Employee conduct.”
Previously, the corporation and the union representing Southwest pilots denied that the cancellations were caused by employees refusing to show up for work in protest of the airline’s vaccine demand.