Southwest Airlines Flies 500 Stranded Passengers Out Of Airport Closed By Hurricane

Image courtesy of David Transier

With the arrival of Hurricane Harvey in Texas this weekend, hundreds of Southwest Airlines customers were stranded on Sunday after Houston Hobby Airport closed — so the airline decided to just fly those folks out of there.

There were about 500 Southwest passengers stuck inside the airport after the Federal Aviation Administration shut it down on Sunday morning, CNN reports. It’s unclear how many people were stranded there total, but all roads going in and out of the airport were also closed.

To get those customers out of there, Southwest took five of its stranded Boeing 737s, loaded them up with passengers, and flew them to Love Field in Dallas on Sunday evening, according to sources cited by CNN.

There were no working lights at the airport, so Southwest’s pilots had to move fast to fly out before the sun set.

It’s not like Southwest broke all the rules, however, as insiders say the carrier first received clearance from the FAA to fly out of the closed airport.

We’ve reached out to Southwest for more information and will update this post if we hear back.