01:13 - Source: WABC
Computer glitch causes massive delays at JFK

Story highlights

British Airways and other international airlines operate out of the affected terminal

At one point, about 1,500 customers were waiting to be checked in

CNN —  

Computer problems have caused massive delays Sunday at one of the nation’s largest airports during one of the busiest travel holidays of the year.

A server crash at New York’s John F. Kennedy Airport has stalled operations at Terminal Seven, according to a spokesman for the Port Authority.

The terminal, which is operated by British Airways, is the only one at the airport affected. Qantas, Iberia, Cathay Pacific and other airlines that use the terminal have seen their flights delayed.

“It’s been pretty packed. And pretty cramped and pretty unsafe at times,” passenger Mike Priestley told CNN affiliate WCBS.

The crash happened at about 4 p.m. ET on Sunday and wasn’t resolved for hours, Port Authority spokesman Neal Buccino said.

However, British Airways said that things are “now running again as normal.”

“We apologize for any inconvenience caused to our customers last night, as a result of a system outage at JFK airport in New York,” the company said in a statement. “British Airways colleagues worked to assist customers during the outage to ensure all flights departed.”

At the delay’s peak, about 1,500 customers were waiting to be checked in, according to the Port Authority.

The average flight delay at JFK was about 35 minutes as of early Monday morning, according to Flightaware.com. That number accounts for the whole airport.

Airlines were still checking people in manually early Monday. Passengers should expect further delays – and large crowds – at the airport Monday morning, authorities said.

The delays at JFK come as a the Transportation Security Administration is dealing with massive lines, causing delays and public backlash.

TSA issues, too

The country’s busiest airports and U.S. airlines have been warning federal lawmakers and the TSA for months about security-screening bottlenecks this summer, but the delays have come earlier than expected.

More passengers, fewer screeners and people avoiding checking their luggage are among the reasons the lines have gotten so long.

TSA chief Peter Neffinger told CNN that staffing issues needed to be addressed in a targeted manner.

“I want to make sure that I can staff as many lanes as I need to at peak periods in the largest area airports because that’s where we’re seeing the problem,” he said.

“Most airports across the country are actually doing quite well. It’s the top 20 or so, and in that, a handful on any given day that can experience problems.”

CNN’s Katia Hetter contributed to this report