Southwest Cancellations Strand NJ Students in Fla.

About 67 local students are stuck in Florida on a class trip because of Southwest cancellations

About 67 Shawnee High School students are stranded in Orlando, Fla., on a class trip that has been extended because of Southwest Airlines massive cancelations.

The Medford, N.J., students were stranded after Southwest canceled about 600 flights over the weekend.

But don't feel too sorry for the high school seniors. All 67 students are staying at the Disney resort where they have been for the past week, but this time Southwest is picking up the tab. In addition to the free digs, Disney threw in free Epcot passes for the students Monday, according to the principal of Shawnee High School.

Southwest expects to cancel 70 more flights Monday after a Boeing 737-300 jet sprung a 5-foot hole in the roof shortly after takeoff from Phoenix on Friday. The plane made an emergency landing. Southwest said no one was seriously injured.

Southwest spokeswoman Brandy King says the airline has inspected 33 similar planes and returned them to service and expects to complete checks on remaining grounded planes by late Tuesday.

King says two planes had cracks similar to those in the Phoenix jet and will be repaired before they fly again. A National Transportation Safety Board member tells The Associated Press a third plane was also found to have cracks developing.

A total of about 200 Shawanee High School seniors went on the class trip to Disneyworld in Orlando last week. The remaining 67 are scheduled to return on a flight to Philadelphia Tuesday morning.


Copyright AP - Associated Press
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