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Computer glitch grounds two U.S. airlines

Problem fixed after two-hour delay

Some flights were delayed Sunday morning at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport.
Air Transportation

(CNN) -- An airline computer system that clears aircraft for takeoff failed Sunday morning, grounding at least two carriers at all U.S. airports for more than two hours, a spokesman for American Airlines said.

Spokesman Tim Wagner said the problem had been corrected, but it had affected "hundreds of flights, thousands of passengers," and "rolling delays" could be expected throughout the day.

"Customers won't necessarily miss their connections," he said, "because everything was stopped."

Wagner said a database malfunctioned that "basically runs every aspect of our client operations -- aircraft dispatch, crew scheduling (and) reporting weight, passenger load, balance."

The ground stop, ordered at 6:45 a.m. ET, affected American Airlines, US Airways and other airlines that share the system, he said.

A US Airways spokeswoman confirmed the problem.

The system was back online at 9 a.m. ET, Wagner said, and flights were slowly getting back in the air.

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