By 6 p.m., the situation had gotten a little bit better. The lines were not as long, but the airlines were still having a difficult time catching up. In the morning, the delays were between two and three hours. By evening, some flights were actually arriving and departing on time, although there were still delays, some up to two hours.
The summer fog always threatens to disrupt things at SFO but when the ceiling is lower than usual, it brings system-wide delays, long lines, and grumpy people. "I'm becoming homicidal," Ohio resident Mary Schaeffer somewhat jokingly told ABC7 News.
"It usually burns off mid-morning, something like that. Here, it's almost noon. We've still got an overcast. As a result, they just can't bring in the flights as quickly as they would like to," SFO spokesperson Mike McCarron said earlier in the day. The runways at SFO are so close together that when the ceiling is so low, it forces the airport to shut down one outbound and one inbound runway.
"It's keeping me from seeing my family," one man told ABC7 News. The passengers most affected were those with connecting flights in other cities. "We've already missed that, so it's OK though. It's always an adventure," Schaeffer said.
"We're going to Kansas which is home and we'll probably miss our connecting flight, which means we probably won't get home today," said Kansas resident Nora Strasser.
"It's inconvenient. I make commitments. I live up to them, so I expect the same from the people I deal with," Illinois resident Suzanne Luby said.
And, the delays all happened on a Friday during SFO's busiest season-summer. "Most of the schools are out. It's a Friday, so people are on the road regardless," McCaron said. On a regular day, about 105,000 go through SFO. On Friday, they were expecting 140,000.