Travelers at RST react to nationwide flight disruptions

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(ABC 6 News) – Airlines were forced to ground their airplanes for hours due to a cascading outage in a government system that delayed or canceled thousands of flights across the U.S. on Wednesday.

The disruptions even affected travelers at Rochester International Airport as there were some delays and cancelations reported Wednesday morning.

Arnold Stulce who is traveling to Chattanooga, Tenn. via a connecting flight through Chicago said, “I got up this morning, the cell phone started blowing up about the news of the FAA computer outage, and so it’s been a hectic time since then.”

Airports in Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and Atlanta were seeing between 30% and 40% of flights delayed. Even Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport reported over 200 delays and almost two dozen cancelations.

More than 21,000 flights were scheduled to take off in the U.S. Wednesday, mostly domestic trips, and about 1,840 international flights expected to fly to the U.S., according to aviation data firm Cirium.

RELATED: Air travel across US thrown into chaos after computer outage

The White House initially said that there was no evidence of a cyberattack behind the outage that ruined travel plans for millions of passengers. President Joe Biden said Wednesday morning that he’s directed the Department of Transportation to investigate.

It was the latest headache for travelers in the U.S. who faced flight cancelations over the holidays amid winter storms and a breakdown with staffing technology at Southwest Airlines.