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Thousands of checked bags miss flights leaving Phoenix airport

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PHOENIZ, Arizona — Flying out of Phoenix to head to a wedding or another special event?

You many not want to put your suit or nice dress in a checked bag.

After a screening glitch that lasted hours, there’s no telling when it will show up.

Thousands of checked bags piled up Thursday at Sky Harbor Airport in Phoenix after technical issues with computer servers prevented the Transportation Security Administration from using machines to screen the luggage.

As a result, more than 3,000 bags missed flights, said spokesman Nico Melendez of the TSA.

The baggage screening resumed late Thursday night and the systems were operational, CNN affiliate KPHO reported.

Agents are testing the systems overnight to ensure it’s ready for Friday flights, the affiliate said.

Many of the bags were stacked up in a parking lot while their owners went on to their destinations.

Before screening resumed, there were a lot of grumpy people at the airport.

“It’s frustrating, yes. I’m tired, tired as everybody else,” one passenger told CNN affiliate KNXV. “I thought if this had happened before maybe there would be a better system in place.”

Traveler Mindy McLarren told CNN affiliate KPHO that some bags were being checked by hand.

“It’s very stressful because I hope that everything that I packed is still in there after people have hand-checked it. And just that it gets there on time,” she said.

McLarren said she took things out of a bag to be checked and put them in her carry-on.

Alternative system

Before it was resolved Thursday night, the problem had gone on for hours, since 6:45 that morning, the TSA said.

Officers switched to an alternative system and brought in additional bomb-sniffing dogs as the bags kept coming. Later in the day, officials brought in tractor-trailers to take some of the bags to other airports.

Officials advised passengers to go to the airport early and to avoid checking bags when possible. Flights where leaving as scheduled.

And you might just want to wear that special outfit on the plane.

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