Planned power outage at FLL leads to lost bags on Southwest flight

FORT LAUDERDALE-HOLLYWOOD INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, FLA. (WSVN) - A planned power outage at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport led to big baggage headaches for some Southwest Airlines passengers, Tuesday.

One flight in particular — Flight 1654 from Fort Lauderdale to Nashville, Tennessee — left many passengers emptyhanded once they landed in Tennessee.

Three agents helped sort through the luggage once the flight got to the gate in Nashville.

Almost every passenger who had checked a bag at FLL arrived to find their baggage still grounded in South Florida.

“But it’s the mere inconvenience of not having my own clothing and my saline solution, my contacts case and a variety of different items,” said one passenger.

In response to the luggage mixup, Southwest Airlines released a statement that read in part, “An anticipated and planned power outage last night related to construction at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport caused some residual effects impacting our baggage handling.”

“Southwest said that they would … allow me to spend $100 in essentials, such as toiletries, whatever I need to sleep in — they would reimburse me, get here early and does not include food,” said the passenger.

Apparently, Southwest chose to get the plane in the air on time at 6:30 a.m. before all the bags could be locked and loaded on board.

“Bottom line, I think Southwest should have notified us because they knew of the problem prior to us boarding,” said the passenger.

“It’s kind of sad. It really is,” said Mary Fontaine, another passenger who was upset by the situation.

In the middle of the holiday rush, the baggage dilemma left many frightful as they began their vacations.

“No bags for anyone else on that entire plane, except for those who carried them on and put them in the overhead compartment,” said Fontaine.

Southwest has reassured its passengers that once the luggage arrives, they can pick up their bags at the Nashvile airport or the bags will be delivered as soon as possible.

The airline said its luggage system is now back on track and working properly.

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