Southwest Airlines flights returned to normal on Tuesday after the airline canceled about 2,400 flights in the past three days.
As of Tuesday afternoon, Southwest had canceled less than 100 flights, or 2% of its schedule, according to the tracking service Flight Air. More than 400 other flights have been delayed.
Southwest says bad weather and air traffic control problems in Florida led to a series of collisions on Friday in which planes and pilots were stranded for their next flight. The crisis peaked on Sunday, when Southwest canceled more than 1,100 flights, or 30 percent of its schedule.
“When you step back, it only takes several days to catch it,” CEO Gary Kelly told CNBC on Tuesday. “We were significantly behind on Friday.”
Casey Murray, president of the Southwest Pilots’ Union, blamed the airline for poor planning. He told the Associated Press that flaws in the airline’s crew scheduling system made it difficult for crew flights and allowed minor tremors to melt.
After extensive cancellations and delays in the summer, the Southwest had already rescheduled its autumn schedule. The airline thought these shortcomings had helped, but the weekend defeat is considering further cuts to its November and December schedules.
The disruptions to the flight began when the union for 9,000 southwest pilots asked a federal court to overturn the airline’s order that all employees be vaccinated against COVID-19. The union argued that the Southwest should negotiate the terms of such a mandate.
Both Southwest and Union deny that the disruptions to the flight were due to protests or the slowness of employees. Both Kelly and Murray said the weekend absenteeism rate was normal, although they did not provide numbers.
Shares of Dallas-based Southwest Airlines fell 4% on Monday and rose 1% in afternoon trading.