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De-icing fluid shortage forces Southwest to cancel Chicago flights

15 February 2018

Southwest Airlines Co said its operations mostly returned to normal at Chicago Midway Airport on Monday after the breakdown of one of its plane de-icing machines forced the cancellation of some 250 flights on Sunday.

Southwest said it "proactively canceled" about 220 flights and was offering refunds or flight vouchers, WBBM-TV reported.

"Due to having to de-ice many of our aircraft because of the weather, we are running low on de-icing fluid".

How does an airline run out of deicing fluid in the middle of February in Chicago?

This is the second time Southwest has dealt with de-icing difficulties at Chicago's Midway Airport since December. The airline blamed freezing conditions at Midway Airport for slowing down deice crews around the holidays. He said it is going to be the last flight he is ever going to take.

Alyssa Eliasen, a spokesperson for the airline, said Southwest had 'actively worked to manage our glycol levels (used to deice aircraft),' but that due to the severity of the winter weather it was forced to cancel the flights.

Flight 2123 to San Jose had just pushed back about 7:30 p.m. when smoke was detected in the cabin of the Boeing 737, according to airport spokeswoman Deanne Thompson. "We saw the huge lines and we found out that all the flights got cancelled". Southwest had 16 deicing trucks.

De-icing fluid shortage forces Southwest to cancel Chicago flights