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Southwest Air: Service to Mitchell Intl. Airport, others may be disrupted due to bitter cold

MILWAUKEE -- Bitter cold temperatures have prompted Southwest Airlines to indicate service may be shut down at multiple airports possibly through Friday, Feb. 1. This shut down affects flights in and out of Milwaukee's Mitchell International Airport, Chicago Midway and Minneapolis/St. Paul. Officials told FOX6 News, "In these extreme conditions we reduce our operations to protect our employees and our equipment."

The cancelled flights took a bite right out of Pamela Wiener's plans.

"Have to extend the car rental, had to extend the hotel stay, but then when the very next morning, it happened again," said Pamela Wiener, from New Jersey.

Southwest Airlines flights were cancelled not once, but twice.

"Tears came to my eyes and I immediately called my husband and I said help, help me figure this out," said Wiener.

Wiener switched to United Airlines to get home to New Jersey, just in time for dinner.

"I have a special diet, dairy free and gluten free and to be in Wisconsin, where cheese and dairy is all around, it's so tempting," said Wiener.

Tempting to look up to see the long list of delays.

"I've had enough of this cold weather. I shoveled 30 inches of snow and I'm ready to go home," Randy Baugher, from Dallas.

Southwest Airlines proactively cancelled flights to keep employees and their equipment safe -- leaving a normally buzzing airport oddly empty.

"This has been smoother than previous check-ins, no long line, parking was easy, no one is in the airport," said Jimmy Clark, from Madison.

Southwest Airlines said more cancellations could come because of the weather, but some people are staying on the bright side.

"The sun is shining brightly and we're smiling and all should be well," said Harriet Brown, from Baltimore." We got to see our daughter for longer than expected."

With time still left, hopeful travelers like Wiener are left looking up.

"With this weather and the airport flight cancellations, that has been difficult but I'm happy I got to see my daughter and spend some time with her," Wiener said.

Southwest Airlines isn't the only airline cancelling flights. Lots of people at the airport are keeping a close eye on what's to come.

Airport officials are saying under no circumstances will the airport close because of the conditions.

Southwest Airlines is encouraging anyone with flights out of the affected cities to check your flight status and explore rebooking options as soon as possible. CLICK HERE for more information on this developing story.

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