NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - Trevecca Nazarene University’s cross country team is scrambling for a way home after its flight from Chicago to Nashville was canceled on Saturday.

The team was set to return home after competing in a meet in the Chicago area at 8:55 p.m. Saturday. Trevecca Coach Austin Selby said he got a call at 4:30 p.m. to let him know the flight had been canceled.

Southwest Airlines reported Saturday that air traffic control issues and weather resulted in a high volume of cancellations throughout the weekend.

"We experienced weather challenges in our Florida airports at the beginning of the weekend, challenges that were compounded by unexpected air traffic control issues in the same region, triggering delays and prompting significant cancellations for us beginning Friday evening. We've continued diligent work throughout the weekend to reset our operation with a focus on getting aircraft and crews repositioned to take care of our customers," Southwest Airlines said in a statement to News4. "With fewer frequencies between cities in our current schedule, recovering during operational challenges is more difficult and prolonged.

"We're working diligently to accommodate our customers as quickly as possible, and we are grateful for their patience. We're offering customers added flexibility to explore self-service rebooking options on Southwest.com, where they can get updates on the status of their travel. We know the frustration flight cancellations are creating for our customers and employees and we apologize, and we again thank everyone for patience as we work first to be safe, and second to be as quick as possible in solving disrupted plans."

CNBC reported more than 1,000 Southwest flights had been canceled on Sunday.

The FAA reported no air traffic staffing shortages have been reported since Friday.

“Some airlines continue to experience scheduling challenges due to aircraft and crews being out of place,” the FAA wrote in a social media post.

Selby told News4 he was able to get hotel rooms near O’Hare Airport in Chicago for the team Saturday night and they were able to take the train from Midway to O’Hare.

Two team members were set to fly back to Nashville at 9:57 a.m. Sunday, but that flight was canceled. They were rescheduled to a flight at 3:15 to Evansville, IN, and they will drive back to Nashville from there. Four team members will leave Chicago on a direct flight to Nashville at 3:25 p.m. Selby and other team members have been booked on a flight home set to leave at 7:20 p.m.

Nashville International Airport officials remind travelers to be sure to check with their airlines of the BNA website for the status of flights in and out of the airport before arriving.

 

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