MIAMI INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, FLA. (WSVN) - Severe weather that rolled through South Florida delayed several flights at Miami International Airport and caused frustration for travelers at baggage claim, who had to wait several hours for their belongings.
On Tuesday, parts of Miami-Dade and Broward counties received several inches of rain because of the thunderstorms. The Turnpike at Northwest 37th Avenue recorded 4 inches of rain, and the intersection of Interstate 75 and Interstate 595 recorded 3.6 inches of rain.
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Meanwhile, ground operations at MIA have returned to normal after the passing storms left hundreds stuck in baggage claim. Airport officials said 64 flights were delayed and two were cancelled.
“It’s frustrating waiting three hours,” Becky Trombly said.
Hundreds of people could be seen on cellphone video waiting in the baggage claim area. Airport officials said lightning in the area shut down ground operations for two hours, and they do their best to work around dangerous weather.
“No offering of water, no offering of anything,” another traveler said. “People are down there with babies. People are down there that are escorting minors that are in tears because they don’t know how the next person they’re supposed to escort can be escorted.”
The severe weather caused flight cancellations and diversions.
“We had to pick up a client from Los Angeles,” chauffeur Jon Sahn said. “That flight was delayed there, got here. They had him circle for an hour, and they diverted him to Tampa.”
Some travelers also missed their connecting flight home due to the storms.
“Flights were departing from here at 8:10, 9:33, 7:40, and they’re telling us they can’t get luggage off a plane,” a woman said. “We landed at 5, and now, their connection was cancelled. Her connection is delayed. This is my ending stop.”
Elsewhere, a trampoline was tossed into the side of a home in Pembroke Pines, and the patio furniture was moved and toppled, as well.
A family member captured photographs of the trampoline resting up against the home as rain continued to pour.
Wednesday afternoon, more people showed up to MIA to claim their luggage and board their flights.
Mitchell Mahanand has been trying to travel from Maryland to Guiana. He said his layover at the airport has been long and frustrating, as he continues to wait for his luggage.
“It was preposterous and unacceptable, I gotta say,” he said. “We waited for about 10 hours or so last night trying to get our bags, requested it multiple times, and these beautiful people were absolutely not helpful at all.”
Mahanand said, at this point, he is not sure his luggage made it to the airport in the first place and was told the search for his belongings could take some time.
“They got to go through all of them, and it could take 10, 12, 40 hours,” he said.
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