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Southwest Airlines resumes some flights at Midway after control tower closes for COVID-19 exposure

They’re averaging 4 to 6 departure flights an hour at the airport, according to a spokesperson for the airline.

Southwest Airlines was averaging 4 to 6 flights per hour on Friday, March 20, 2020.
Southwest Airlines was averaging 4 to 6 flights per hour on Friday, March 20, 2020.
Getty file photo

Southwest Airlines has resumed operations at Midway Airport after all flights were suspended earlier in the day due to a control tower closure related to COVID-19 exposure.

By Friday afternoon, Southwest was averaging 4 to 6 departure flights an hour at the airport, according to airline spokesperson Ro Hawthorne. Midway serves as the airline’s Chicago hub.

“We have reduced operations at the Chicago Midway airport due to the closure of the FAA ATC tower in the Chicago area,” Hawthorne said in an email.

Earlier Friday, the airline temporarily suspended all of its flights at the airport, the Associated Press reported.

An air traffic control tower at Midway was shut down Tuesday after several technicians there tested positive for COVID-19. As a result, Southwest suspended all of its flights from the airport until Wednesday.

The Federal Aviation Administration, which controls the tower, said it has been closed for a “thorough cleaning,” according to an emailed statement from agency spokesman Tony Molinaro.

Midway has seen more than 360 canceled flights in the last 24 hours, according to the Chicago Department of Aviation.