Southwest flights canceled at Sky Harbor, planes grounded for inspection

Posted: Updated:

PHOENIX- A dozen Southwest Airlines flights were canceled, a dozen more delayed coming into and out of Sky Harbor International Airport on Saturday.

Nationwide, the airline grounded 80 of its planes which triggered 300 cancellations.

Meanwhile federal officials plan to remove and examine a piece of the ripped fuselage, which forced an emergency landing on Friday. Southwest Flight 812 was traveling from Phoenix to Sacramento when a 3-foot hole tore through the planes cabin. Data from flight recorders will also be reviewed.

"Our mission is to determine not only what happened but figure out why it happened and to prevent things like this from happening in the future," said NTSB official Robert Sumwalt.

The 80 planes that were set aside on Saturday are the same model involved in Friday's incident, the Boeing 747-300. Southwest said in a statement, the airline is looking for "aircraft skin fatigue."

Southwest passengers, some whose flights were delayed, said they are still a little leery.

Another passenger, John Fox says he wants to see Southwest increase inspections, " I'm concerned that the plane was flying and then they found out that it had a problem. I mean I would hope that they would have found that out before it was flying."

Kale Gilmore says what happened yesterday was just a freak accident. "No real concerns about the aircraft safety, at least anything on my part. I'm not overly concerned about that. I think track records kinda speak for themselves."