A United Airlines flight scheduled from Newark Airport was forced to refuel after taxiing for more than six hours. The flight to Denver, which had been delayed due to poor weather, was eventually canceled after the crew exceeded their maximum hours. We explore this story in greater detail below.
United flight on apron for over eight hours
On August 22nd, United Airlines flight 1910 from Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) to Denver International Airport (DEN) suffered a series of mishaps that led to passengers spending more than eight hours on the apron. The flight, which was scheduled to depart at 15:10 local time, initially couldn't take off for almost three hours due to poor weather.
As per regulations, which allow a maximum of three hours on the apron at a time, the aircraft momentarily returned to the gate before taxiing again for another three hours. However, with the flight still unable to depart, the plane was forced to return to the terminal as it no longer had enough fuel to complete the journey to Denver.
Hiroko Tabuchi, a reporter for The New York Times, was onboard the flight and sent out a series of tweets detailing her experience. According to aviationa2z, the Captain announced that air traffic control had plotted a longer route to Denver to avoid adverse weather conditions, which, together with the hours of taxiing, forced the aircraft to refuel.
Passengers reboarded but crew clocked out
While the aircraft, a Boeing 737-900ER, was refueling, disembarked passengers received a notification on the United app stating that their flight had been canceled. However, airport staff nonetheless asked passengers to board the plane again and the flight remained on the apron for another two hours. Unfortunately, by this point, United crew members were unable to complete the journey as they would have exceeded their maximum allocated hours, causing the flight to be canceled. According to The Independent, passengers claimed that they were only given a cup of water and a packet of biscuits during the entire ordeal. Delays at Newark
Lightning and thunderstorms were the initial reason behind the delay of flight UA1910, affecting scores of flights out of Newark Airport. Flight data from FlightRadar24.com shows that a United flight (UA1690) from Newark to Denver scheduled after UA1910 managed to depart while the earlier flight was still on the ground.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) stated that the average delay time across the US on August 22nd was 37 minutes, of which 92% was caused by adverse weather.
This article originally apepared on Simple Flying