All American Airlines flights grounded due to computer crash

Published On: Apr 16 2013 01:47:50 PM EDT   Updated On: Apr 17 2013 06:08:51 AM EDT

American Airlines is no longer grounded. Officials say they've fixed an outage in the company's main reservations system, blamed on a computer glitch.


American Airlines passengers in Jacksonville and across the country were delayed Tuesday afternoon after the company's Sabre reservation system crashed. At 4:30 p.m., the airline says its systems were restored, but it will take hours for flights to return to normal.

American's passengers at Jacksonville International Airport were told they are on "indefinite hold."

SLIDESHOW: Passengers stranded at JIA

Official information from the airline is coming from Twitter:

"American's reservation and booking tool, Sabre is offline. We're working to resolve the issue as quickly as we can. We apologize to our customers for any inconvenience," company spokeswoman Mary Frances Fagan tweeted about 12:30 p.m.

Two hours later, they tweeted that all flights across the system would be grounded until 4 p.m. Central Daylight Time -- 5 p.m. on the East Coast.

According to, three flights from Jacksonville International Airport are still waiting to take off:

  • Flight 2087 to Dallas, 12:05 p.m.
  • Flight 473 to Dallas: 2:45 p.m.
  • Flight 3451 to Miami: 3:30 p.m.

There other flights out of JIA tonight are all after 5 p.m., but will likely be delayed because the aircraft didn't arrive from a previous connection.

"When we were boarding the plane, they couldn't scan our boarding passes because the computers were down," said Ken Elmore, who was booked on the 12:05 Dallas flight. 

Elmore said about an hour after the plane taxied out, it returned to the gate and everyone was told they were on indefinite hold.

At American Airlines' hub in Miami, several people reported waiting on planes for up to two hours.

"We apologize to our customers for any inconvenience," the airline wrote on its Facebook page.

American estimates it flies about 275,000 passengers a day and receives more than 239,000 reservations calls.

Sharon Schaeffer was ready to board her flight from Jacksonville International Airport Tuesday evening to Dallas, but instead she waited 90 minutes in a line at the American Airlines counter to find out that her flight was canceled.

"They canceled flight from Dallas to Portland, so I have to stay in Dallas until tomorrow," said Schaeffer.

Schaeffer said American Airlines bought her a hotel for her overnight stay once she arrived in Dallas and then she'd have to take the next connection to her final destination in Oregon.

"Kind of frustrating, now have to call my husband in Portland, tell him not to pick me up until tomorrow," said Schaeffer.

Schaeffer was one of thousands impacted by the grounding of American Airlines flights around the country Tuesday. The airline said it was due to the outage of their main reservation system.

"I just got here and just heard," said Ericka Darden. "I don't even know what's going on, I just heard."

For the most part, if travelers flights were canceled vacationers didn't mind.

"I'm on vacation mode, I don't have to be anywhere, I'm flying to the other side of the world," said Natalia Stewart. "I don't mind."


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