Airport operations back to normal after power outage

Operations are back to normal Wednesday afternoon at Charlotte/Douglas International Airport, after a blown transformer curtailed US Airways' operations Tuesday night and forced some passengers to spend the night sleeping in the airport terminal.

Duke Energy crews finished repairs to the transformer before 5 a.m. Wednesday, and US Airways quickly resumed a normal flight schedule. Michelle Mohr, a spokeswoman for US Airways, said the airline was able to re-book most of the 1,500 passengers who were affected by the outage.

Mohr said about 50 flights were canceled and 120 delays Tuesday evening, after the transformer blew about 4:30 p.m. in Concourse C.

"It was a hot, sleepy, uncomfortable night," one young man, who was headed for Washington, said Wednesday morning. The man, who did not give his name, said he had slept in an airport chair overnight.

Several passengers said US Airways had offered them ice and water during the night, because the power problems knocked out air conditioning in the concourse.

Airlines operations were curtailed because the blown transformer prevented personnel from using the jet bridges -- the walkways from the terminal to the jets.

"We didn't have many long lines this morning, as we re-accommodated our customers on other flights to get them to their final destinations," Mohr said Wednesday morning.

She said US Airways employees "did a great job of taking care of our customers ... in some very trying circumstances."