Hurricane Irma: Southwest Florida International Airport not expected to resume services until mid-week at earliest
Flights in and out of Southwest Florida International Airport are not expected to begin ramping up before Wednesday at the earliest, spokeswoman Victoria Moreland said.
As of Sunday afternoon, Delta was the only airline that hasn't officially canceled Tuesday flights.
Airport staff will be doing a damage assessment of the entire facility, including the runway, terminal and parking garage Monday morning, after sustained winds have died down below 40 mph.
Once the assessment is complete, the next step is to get airport, airline, TSA and concessions staff in, which could be difficult if local roads are impassable.
“It’s staffing,” Moreland said Sunday. “It’s getting the airlines to get their people here, TSA. We can’t do anything without them here.”
She said the airlines and TSA may fly in staff from other parts of the country if needed, but that takes time.
Once the airlines do get running again, likely by mid-week, it likely will not be a full resumption of service right away, Moreland said. They will ramp up service as staffing and equipment allow.
Moreland said anyone who had a scheduled flight in or out of Southwest Florida International Airport should check with their airline immediately to reschedule.
Airport and airline leaders should have a better idea of when service will resume by Monday afternoon, Moreland said.
Although the airport currently is not open to the general public, 357 essential airport, airline, TSA and concessions employees are riding out the storm there.
“It’s not a public shelter, but we have people here,” Moreland said. “Everybody is here that needs to be here.”