The Port Authority of NY and New Jersey says it will investigate the water pipe break that added to the weather-related delays at Kennedy Airport and will "hold all responsible parties accountable".
The airport is now experiencing departure and arrival delays of more than two hours. "Please check with your airline prior to coming to the airport". The Port Authority blamed "cascading" issues that included the large numbers of holiday travellers, difficulties in baggage handling and staff shortages.
Global arrivals to one terminal at New York's Kennedy Airport have been suspended following a water main break.
Global arrivals to Terminal 4 were suspended earlier, with passengers who were already arrived being taken to other terminals for processing.
"A surge in flights at JFK Airport, produced by the rescheduling of delayed flights, combined with the effects of the winter storm, which severely disabled equipment, has resulted in terminal operators and airlines experiencing delays in getting planes and their passengers into their gates", the Port Authority said in a statement. "There has been no impact on departures and [the airport shuttle] as far as we know".
The official Twitter account for the Port Authority of NY and New Jersey tweeted news of the break, which also led to a shutdown of global arrivals into Terminal 4.
It was unclear what caused the water problem, which sent about 3 inches of it into the terminal's west end. A succession of flights had been cancelled and thousands of passengers stranded before the incident, adding to a tense situation in a terminal that had already seen scuffles and hours-long waits at baggage claim to retrieve belongings.
The gridlock was particularly bad at Delta Air Lines' global hub at Terminal 4 along with Terminal 1, which is used by overseas carriers such as Air France and Japan Airlines.