TAMPA, Fla. (FOX 13) - Monday's wet and stormy weather threw a wrench into the flight schedule at Tampa International Airport. Thousands of passengers were delayed for hours while others' flights were canceled completely.
Airport officials reported 163 delays and 45 cancellations as a result of today's lightning and storm. The east coast routes felt the biggest impact with canceled departures to and from cities like Atlanta, Charlotte, and Philadelphia.
Orlando International Airport was also heavily impacted. They saw more than 300 delays and about 60 cancellations.
The arrivals board was lit up in red, too. One woman who was flying into Tampa, arrived three hours late even though her plane was in Tampa by the original time it was supposed to land. However, it was circling around the storm.
"We were circling around here for a while and then they said well, we're running out of gas so we need to go to Jacksonville," said Lisa Thomason
Deborah Wynes, who was trying to get home to Bangor, was able to eventually get on a flight from Tampa. But, she'd ultimately miss her connection and spend the night in New York. "My flight was supposed to leave at 3:14 and it's been delayed about five times," Wynes said. "My first night overnight at an airport. I can't say I'm real happy about it. What are you going to do? There could be a lot worse things that could happen."
Douglas McNeil, who was scheduled to fly to Philadelphia, was forced to spend an extra night in Tampa. "I waited since 12:30. One-hour delay, two-hour delay and then, finally, the flight was canceled at 4:30 due to weather," McNeil said.
As we roll into the rainy season, those daily thunderstorms will become more of a pattern. Planes are halted until the lightning passes.
Airport officials say it's always a good idea, whether you're flying out or picking someone up, to double-check with airlines for any delays or cancellations.