Judge orders Spirit Airlines pilots back to work to avoid delays at FLL

FORT LAUDERDALE-HOLLYWOOD INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, FLA. (WSVN) - Days after a major airline canceled flights and chaos ensued, a normal morning began, Wednesday, in Fort Lauderdale.

Spirit Airlines was forced to cancel the flights due to pilots going on strike, which led to tensions running high at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport. Around 20,000 passengers have been affected by the pilot’s strike since the beginning of May, Spirit said, and about 300 flights have been canceled as a result.

“A delay. I got another email an hour later — another delay,” said passenger Terrell Cole. “That was the third delay.”

“Everything is just going downhill,” said another passenger, Larazus Daniels.

Kaydia Brooks is one of those passengers who has been affected by the strike. “My legs are hurting, and there’s a baby in my tummy, so I am upset,” she said.

Some angry passengers resorted to fighting one another and three were arrested due to the strike and cancellations. A 7News viewer was able to record an officer restraining and handcuffing a man on the ground.

“I saw that video, and I was horrified,” said Spirit Airlines spokesperson Paul Berry. “I was shocked. Our customers deserve better than that.”

Berry added that cancellations of this nature should not happen. “Cancellations are going to happen because of weather or air traffic controller issues,” he said. “but they shouldn’t happen because pilots decide they don’t want to fly.”

After a federal judge granted a temporary restraining order, Tuesday, and set a hearing for a preliminary injunction, normality has begun to set in at FLL on Wednesday morning. Only one delayed Spirit flight was listed as of 5:30 a.m.

However, some feel they may not make it to their destination on time. “I just hoped that we would still make it on time,” said Donovan Gordon, who had his flight delayed.

Gordon and his wife were happy to overcome the nightmare and are now focused on getting to Jamaica for their dream wedding. “It’s like, ‘Oh, my God, babe, here comes the shenanigans with this airline,'” said Kanishia Gordon.

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