US Customs Outage Creates Chaos for Thousands of Passengers

A widespread outage at customs processing systems at a number of U.S. airports stranded thousands of passengers during a busy holiday travel day.
2:30 | 01/03/17

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Transcript for US Customs Outage Creates Chaos for Thousands of Passengers
school for so many people. So many people had a difficult time coming home. Did you see those scenes? Travelers stuck in massive lines at customs. Look at the video of people. This is in line in Atlanta. The busiest airport in the U.S. Gio Benitez is at JFK, Kennedy airport in New York. They experienced delays as well. Reporter: Robin, George, good morning to you. No doubt about it. It was a headache for travelers. This is the same system that checks international travelers coming into this country. Overnight, it had major problems. Overnight, the nation's airports at a standstill. Thousands facing massive delays. There was thousands and thousands of people, hot, sweaty. No water. Reporter: As the U.S. Kus comes and border protection system shut down for four hours, during one of the biggest travel times of the year. The agency says the system-wide computer problem began around 6:00 P.M. Leaving those coming in on international flights stranded. Completely chaotic. No system to who got through fast and who had to wait two hours. Reporter: In Miami, emergency personnel treated seven passengers for medical emergencies, while airport staff handed out fans and water. In Atlanta, customs officials took a dozen people at a time, manually processing their documents. At New York's JFK, delays as long as 90 minutes. They herd you into one line. They herd you into another line. Then they herd you into another line. It was just chaos. Reporter: It was taking immediate action to address the technology disruption, adding it was working to process travelers as quickly as possible while maintaining the highest levels of security. They told us to just be patient and get back in line. Reporter: This morning, many questioning what caused the outage creating a nightmare for frustrated travelers coast to coast. And back out here live at JFK, we should tell you that at this point, customs believe this is was just a technical problem, not a malicious take, George. Thank goodness. Meantime, how did they -- you said they maintained security. How did they make sure the people on the no-fly list didn't get in? Reporter: No doubt, a concern, George. Customs says the national security database, that part of it, was always working. It may have been slow, but it was always working. Thank you, gio. Now to the deadly storms

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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