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Power Is Back At MSP, But Some Are Still Stranded

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(credit: CBS) Reg Chapman
Reg Chapman joined WCCO-TV in May of 2009. He came to WCCO fr...
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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Power has been mostly restored at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport after a power outage that lasted more than six hours caused hundreds of flight delays and cancellations.

MSP officials have not determined what caused the outage. The lights went out in concourses A, B, C and D in Terminal 1 at around 8 a.m. Saturday.

Emergency lights illuminated the concourse, restrooms were out of order and so were the moving sidewalks. A total of 63 gates were affected.

Delta Airlines was forced to cancel more than 250 flights that stuck many travelers in long lines as they waited for answers.

“No one is really telling us … the things we need to know to get things done,” said stranded traveler Mary Lempke.

For more than three hours, Lempke stood in line waiting for vouchers for a place to sleep and something to eat.

According to MSP officials, the power outage affected heating and cooling systems, which in turn affected restaurants, retail establishments and jet bridges.

Passengers had to be taken off arriving planes on the tarmac and bused to the terminal.

Some stranded travelers, like Peggy Gibbons and Gayle Corbett, made the most out of their wait.

“We’re going to the casino rather than the hotel they offered us because it will be more fun,” Gibbons said.

They figure a few games of blackjack is better than getting upset.

“You never know what is going to happen so you make the best of it,” Corbett said.

Delta Airlines did offer some of its passengers a night at a local hotel and a food voucher.

MSP officials say they expect about 500 people to sleep inside the terminal tonight.

Delta Airlines encourages its customers to check the status of their flights at its website before heading to the airport.

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