Southwest Airlines cancels more than 450 flights after computer glitch

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DENVER -- Southwest Airlines passengers scrambled to reschedule flights after hundreds were canceled Wednesday because of technical glitches.

On Thursday afternoon, the airline announced more than 450 flights had been canceled in attempt to get planes back in line. That's up from 221 flights that had been canceled as of 5:30 a.m.

The cancellations were primarily a result of displaced crews and aircraft.

"Simply put, if the crews aren't in place, the planes can't fly,"  employee Linda Rutherford said on the airline's website.

Flights across the country were held up as the airline scrambled to fix the problems Wednesday. For about three hours, passengers couldn't buy tickets, check in for flights or check flight status on the company's website.

Nearly 700 flights were canceled and hundreds more were delayed because of the technical glitch.

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Southwest said passengers on its flights Thursday should check their flight status and plan to arrive earlier than usual because longer-than-usual lines are expected as several passengers who were impacted Wednesday are rescheduled.

Southwest issued a statement Thursday morning to apologize for the inconvenience.

I want to start off by once again apologizing to our Customers and reiterating that your experience throughout the past 24 hours is not the service you should expect from Southwest Airlines. Most of our systems are back online this morning following yesterday's technology outages, but recovery will take some time. We expect some cancelations and delays as we position aircraft and crews.

As of 6:30 a.m. CDT, we have canceled more than 221 flights and continue to manage the flight disruptions across our system. Our Employees are the best in the business, and they are working extremely hard to get you and your luggage to your destination. Thank you for hanging in there with us. We will have more information later regarding flexible rebooking, and we will continue to work with each and every affected Customer to make this right.