HEBRON, Ky. (FOX19)— A representative from WOW air offered "it’s most sincere apologies" Tuesday to nearly 200 passengers whose flight was delayed about 27 hours at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport.
Flight # 144 was scheduled to depart for Iceland just before 1 a.m., an airport spokeswoman confirmed to FOX 19.
But the plane stayed put due to "unforeseen issues regarding delivering all relevant papers to U.S. Customs and Border Protection," company officials wrote in a prepared statement.
"Despite best endeavors to solve the problem, WOW air was unable to resubmit the necessary papers before the operating crew’s legal operating hours had elapsed."
By 5 a.m., WOW air passengers called FOX19 to express their concerns. They said they were being forced to wait on the plan and were not permitted to go into the terminal.
"There’s no electricity on board. We can’t charge our phones. We’ve been sitting here for hours, " Margaret Monto, of Springbor, told FOX19.
"Literally, all they gave us was a candy bar and water. That’s all we’ve gotten so far," she said. "They said they needed paperwork from customs they never got. They said we can stay on the plane or bridge but can’t go into the air conditioned terminal."
FOX19 reached out to the airline and CVG representatives.
Approximately six hours later, passengers were told the flight was rescheduled to leave at 3:45 p.m. Tuesday, nearly 27 hours after its original departure time.
"Passengers have been given meal vouchers at the airport and offered hotel accommodation," reads WOW air’s statement. "All passengers have been updated about their flight and options available to them. Passengers have been given the option to cancel their travels for a full refund of the flight or change to another date or destination. WOW air apologizes for the inconvenience this caused and is now working hard to accommodate all affected passengers."
The passengers should have been allowed into the terminal, said Mindy Kershner, CVG spokeswoman.
"According to CVG procedures, they are allowed in," she said.
Kershner said she scrambled to the terminal once she learned about the problems and quickly began trying to coordinate food, drinks and cots for all the passengers.
Airport officials reached out to the airline at once, she added: "We are already having conversations with them to make sure this doesn’t happen again."