Travelers Left Without Checked Baggage After TSA Glitch

More than 3000 bags missed flights out of Phoenix Harbor Airport

There were lots of pensive faces and clenched palms as travelers from Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport waited for their bags to arrive at Lindbergh Field Thursday night.

“It’s my 5th time I’ve been here today,” said Campbell Punnett, a Phoenix resident.

Punnett's bags are one of the more than 3000 bags that missed flights out of Phoenix airport.

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) says it’s because of a problem with the checked bag screening system.

Since noon, Punnett has been coming to Lindbergh Field looking for his luggage from his Southwest Airlines flight. Each time he was left holding a form for lost or delayed baggage, instead of the bag he needs.

“I’m here for a camping thing. My bag has everything I need and it’s probably not going to be here in time. I will be at the mercy of the people I’m camping with,” he said.

Baggage from inside Phoenix's airport was moved to a special events lot after it got too backed up in the terminal.

“I'm crossing my fingers my luggage is here," said San Diego resident Scott Wood.

Wood noticed the mess while waiting for his flight.

“I don’t know why people had big luggage going into where you wait for flights. That seemed odd to me,” he said.

The luggage was loaded onto trucks and driven to airports in Las Vegas and Los Angeles to screen. Then, everything was flown out to their proper destinations.

But nearly 12-hours after he arrived in San Diego, Punnett is still waiting for his baggage.

“I’ve had a lot of time to work through the frustration and reflect on all of this, so now it’s just sort of come what may. I'm going to go with flow and assume it will work alright,” he said.

The TSA released a statement that read, in part:

“TSA baggage screening systems at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport are operational. We will continue testing the system throughout the night in preparation for tomorrow's scheduled operations."

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