DENVER (CBS4)– Flight delays blamed on severe weather in the Midwest forced more than 800 passengers to spend the night at Denver International Airport.

Many of those cancelled or delayed flights started getting off the ground Wednesday morning, mostly with flights to Chicago.

The trouble started Tuesday night because of severe weather in the Midwest. More than 1,800 flights were cancelled on Tuesday with another 12,000 delays nationwide.

“There were several different sections where you could get help and each one was backed up row after row,” passenger Kathy Mason.

Mason said to get out of Chicago she had to hitch a ride to an airport in nearby Peoria. She had been trying to leave for two days but even when flights resumed in Chicago there was no guarantee she would be able to get on one.

Planes lined up on the tarmac waiting to take off. (credit: CBS)

Planes lined up on the tarmac waiting to take off. (credit: CBS)

“People were so panicked and upset but I was lucky,” said Mason.

Passenger Sharon Mushkin waited seven hours at DIA but gave up when her connections were cancelled.

“They got us on the plane and we sat there and then they got us off the plane,” said Mushkin.

Malfunctions at the control tower at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport were made worse by the severe weather.

“When we saw the impacts in Chicago overnight it wasn’t just impacting Denver it was impacting the entire system,” said DIA spokeswoman Julie Smith.


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