A Customs and Border Protection (CBP) system crashed created hours of misery for travelers across the U.S, with mounting queues and delays.
The crash happened yesterday at 5pm Eastern Standard Time and the system was not back up again until four hours later, at 9pm. At 10.30pm, the CBP tweeted that all airports were operating as they should be.
As passengers across the country became more disgruntled, they took pictures and videos and posted them on social media. According to NBC news, reports of people passing out at Miami airport also surfaced.
One passanger tweeted, “Vomit on the floor and passports being turned into fans as temperatures and tempers rise at marathon Miami @CustomsBorder line.”
While another tweeted, “Letting children and elderly through. Getting HOT. Many people haven’t slept. Customs system shutdown.”
The problem was compounded as multiple airports were down at the same time. Atlanta was out for about an hour with other hubs such as JFK, Boston, and Los Angeles experienced outages at the same time.
One passenger summed up the situation quite well, tweeting, “Update from pilot….because customs computers are down…we are the 20th plane in line for a gate”
The airports used Twitter to give announcements on progress to restore the system. Some airports resorted to processing passengers manually to try and keep things moving while the system was being restored.
LA Airport tweeted, “@CustomsBorder at LAX reports nationwide outage of I-94 processing system. Arrivals to be processed manually as CBP works to restore it”
Despite the news being full of accusations about Russia’s involvement in hacking, there is no evidence of malice being involved in the systems crash that brought misery to so many. That said, the reason for the crash is yet to be discovered.
The affected airports are all operating normally. All concerned are hoping the crash was an isolated incident.