Passengers share travel stories during COU runway shutdown

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COLUMBIA - Many travelers going through the Columbia Regional Airport are trying to find answers about cancellations and future flights into and out of Columbia.

Flights from Saturday night through Monday have been cancelled. Air Wisconsin, a carrier of United Express, had a flight departing out of the Columbia airport this afternoon.

Airline passenger Rachel Banke said she was completely unaware of the cancellations or the main runway being closed off. Bank thought she only had to worry about cancellations for weather at Chicago O'Hare International Airport, not because of issues with the runways.

"I never realized it before I came to travel today," Bank said. "It makes me slightly nervous since I have an interview, and it is important to go to that. I am hoping for a nice, safe flight."

Incoming traveler David Montgomery is looking for transparency in the situation. He used alternate ways to travel back to Columbia.

Montgomery found out his flight to Columbia was canceled halfway through his first flight from Seattle to Dallas. He ended up having to fly into Kansas City International Airport from Dallas and arrived around 10 p.m. Saturday. Montgomery drove from Kansas City to Columbia this morning using a rental car. 

"I am big into transparency and honesty, and I felt like I was deceived," Montgomery said. "Even if I had been expected to do the Monday flight, which I could not, my wife had to get to work."

Montgomery was originally told the flight was canceled due to weather conditions.  

United Airlines Flight 4850 coming in from Chicago landed early this afternoon on the interim runway. Airline passenger Alexander Daniels did not feel safe on the landing.

"It was so bumpy," Daniels said. "The old woman sitting beside me saw me doing the sign of the cross. She said she was really scared."

Daniels said he did not feel the airport did an adequate job communicating with passengers about the flight cancellations.  

"They need to inform us, our families and our loved ones," Daniels said. "They do not know what is going on, and some of them are completely confused."

The airport released a statement on their Facebook page Sunday afternoon.