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Springfield airport resumes flights after FAA safety system outage

City of Springfield
Springfield-Branson National Airport

"Six or seven" flights were delayed at Springfield-Branson National Airport after federal officials temporarily shut down all domestic departures due to a safety system outage on Wednesday.

The FAA cleared flights to resume around 8 a.m. Missouri time on Wednesday, and Springfield flights got going shortly afterward, said airport spokesperson Kent Boyd.

"Flights were basically leaving Springfield around 8:30 a.m. Wednesday morning," Boyd said.

Wednesday's flight delays took place as the FAA's Notice to Air Missions system went offline in the early morning hours. NOTAM is a real-time alert system for a wide range of potential issues, NPR reported, including everything from closed runways to big flocks of birds or plumes of volcanic ash.

Boyd, with the airport, said "I would caution people, especially people who are flying today, perhaps even tomorrow that the snowball effect in these departures — excuse me, these delays — this morning will snowball, and that it will affect flights throughout the day."

Boyd said the best thing passengers can do is to keep up with changes in flight schedules using mobile smartphone apps provided by airlines.

But patience may be helpful as the nation's air travel system comes back online and airlines attempt to reschedule flights.

Boyd said, "Having said that, I would caution people that I wouldn't be surprised if the airlines have trouble today keeping up providing accurate information."

More than 4,300 flights within, into or out of the U.S. had been delayed and more than 750 others canceled, NPR reported at 8 a.m. Central time.

Gregory Holman is a KSMU reporter and editor focusing on public affairs.