Atlanta airport outage: Terrorism, inside threat not ruled out, FBI says

Atlanta airport outage: Terrorism, inside threat not ruled out, FBI says

  • Story Highlights
  • Six flights are canceled today, down from Sunday’s high of 1,173 canceled flights.
  • However, stranded passengers are still sleeping on floors at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.
  • Piles of unclaimed luggage remain, too.  

2:08 P.M. UPDATE: The FBI released a statement about its investigation into the massive power outage at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.

"The FBI is working alongside Georgia Power, Atlanta Fire Rescue and ATF following logical leads into the fire that caused the power outage at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport,” Kevin Rowson, spokesman for the FBI in Atlanta, said in the statement. “Although it has not been ruled out, at this point there is no information to suggest there was any insider threat or nexus to terrorism."

ORIGINAL STORY: Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport is getting back to normal two days after a massive power outage brought the world’s busiest airport to a standstill.

However, signs of the outage remain among stacks of unclaimed baggage and stranded passengers sleeping on the floors.


Georgia Power officials said the equipment that manages electric sources into the airport failed, sparking a fire that spurred the outage.

More than 1,500 flights were canceled between Sunday and Monday. And while remaining passengers are hoping to fly out Tuesday, some won’t make it out until Wednesday, according to Channel 2 Action News.

Six flights were canceled Tuesday, and 15 others were delayed.

One passenger, Rashaad Brennen, was originally rebooked onto one of more than 400 flights canceled Monday, but now he may have to wait another 48 hours, he told the news station. 

“When I got here, they told me my initial flight was pushed back until Wednesday,” Brennan said. 

He is on standby for a flight home to Philadelphia, Channel 2 reported.

“I just want to go home,” Brennen said. “Just really want to go home.”

Passenger Eva Huff was offered a refund and may fly out later this afternoon.

“Horrible,” Huff said. “Nightmare. I have been stuck here all night. They changed my flight maybe four times. Never come back to Atlanta.”

Officials with Georgia Power are investigating what caused the fire in the underground tunnel.

They know what happened, but not why at this point.

Signs of chaos remain two days after a power outage shut down Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. JOHN SPINK / JSPINK@AJC.COM

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