New Hartford woman was among thousands stranded at Atlanta airport

In Atlanta, Georgia, thousands of people are still stranded at the busiest airport in the world, a day after a fire cut the power for 10 hours.

Posted: Dec 18, 2017 5:19 PM

In Atlanta, Georgia, thousands of people are still stranded at the busiest airport in the world, a day after a fire cut the power for 10 hours.

More than a thousand flights were grounded yesterday and hundreds of flights were cancelled today at Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International AIrport. The fire that caused it was in an underground facility, and it cut both the power supply and the backup system.

A New Hartford woman and former Herkimer County legislator was forced to sleep on the floor while she waited for a flight back home. Helen Rose was in an airport restaurant when the power went out.


“I was half an hour away from getting on my flight and I ended up spending the entire night there like most everyone else did."

She said the terminal she was in at least had overhead emergency lighting, whereas some terminals didn’t have any lighting at all.

Eugenia Siracuse got to the airport in Atlanta this morning to fly home to central New York. She says airline workers were stressed but tried to do everything they could to make passengers comfortable.

“It was a zoo,” she said. “I mean, I've been in Atlanta a number of times – it was wall-to-wall people.”

But among the chaos came newfound friendships, which was a joy for Rose, who was flying solo.

“I met some young people who kind of adopted me as their grandmother and I thought I was adopting them as my grandchildren,” Roe said. “So, we had very, very pleasant people from all over the country.”

Rose says there were only a handful of people who got frustrated, while the majority tried to make the best of a difficult situation.

“We've got to celebrate the small things and let the big things take care of themselves,” she said. “It was outside our control, so that was it.”

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