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Weather-equipment outage causes flight delays at RIAC

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An outage of weather-observing equipment has created flight delays at the Roswell International Air Center since Sunday, according to a city of Roswell announcement, and those delays are expected to continue until at least Saturday.

The delays are necessary until a faulty sensor in the weather equipment, the Automated Surface Observing System, is replaced. The system, owned by the Federal Aviation Administration and maintained by the National Weather Service, provides weather information to pilots.

The National Weather Service has made plans to obtain a new sensor, but its installation in the Roswell system will not be able to take place until Saturday at the earliest. The needed weather information also can be provided by staff at the Roswell air center’s control tower, but the tower closes each day at 9 p.m.

Until the automated weather equipment is fixed, American Airlines is planning to delay the last flight to Roswell from Dallas/Fort Worth (normally arriving in Roswell at 11 p.m.) each day until the next morning when the Roswell control tower opens and can provide the weather information. That will mean the late-night flight will arrive around 8 a.m. the next day and depart back to Dallas-Fort Worth around 9 a.m. Passengers should check AA.com or call 800-433-7300 if they believe their flight may be affected.