Passengers caught up in airport delay say they want to see changes

Local News

Many people who were stuck in the three hour Tuesday airport delay say they want to see major changes on how incidents like this are handled in the future

David Cantillo says he had been on board, in his seat to a direct flight to New York, when they were asked to leave the plane.

“Literally minutes  away from taking off and then all of a sudden the pilot, makes an announcement that there was a security breach an that the TSA wants everybody off the planes,” said Cantillo.

He said he originally thought it would take an hour or two at most to get everyone back into the terminal, but it ended up taking much longer.

While they were waiting he said no one was telling them what was happening with their flight plans. 

“If you look at the way everybody … at the way we’re standing, at the way we’re sitting, there’s really no organization at all. It really seems like we’re unorganized. So at the very least if you’re going to evacuate … there should be a procedure in line,” said Cantillo.

Another man says he had a connecting flight, and was frustrated with the lack of news from airport staff.

“You’re sitting here waiting … I don’t know what time my flight is or will be … I’m frustrated because I’m worried about my other flights being cancelled,” said Charles Paulos, a passenger.

Eddie Palone just arrived to the airport from the mainland when his whole flight was told to exit the terminal. He ended up missing his connecting flight home to Maui.

“I’m on the phone looking. It says that my plane was boarding and preparing to take off, and it took of and landed in Maui,” said Palone. “I was told to be prepared to possibly spend the night.”

Tim Sakahara, a spokesman with the Department of Transportation, says they will review the procedures.

“There’s always things that can be done better, and the lead officials were communicating this entire time. They’ll communicate through the night and tomorrow as well to try to figure out what went okay, what could be done better, and what we shouldn’t do again,” said Sakahara. 

“Things like that will all be discussed to try to make it better. You can always learn from situations like this … We do want to learn from this and make it better, but fortunately, this is very rare though,” said Sakahara.

Airport staff also handed out free water to people waiting outside and Sakahara said staff were also able to answer questions about the delay.

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