Chicago-area air traffic center fully operational

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Chicago fire - O'Hare - flights cancelled - updated 9/28/2014
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Chicago-area air traffic center fully operational
In this Monday, Sept. 29, 2014 courtroom sketch, Thirty-six-year-old Brian Howard, right, of Naperville, Ill., and his attorney Ron Safer, second right, appear before federal judge Michael T. Mason, left, along with prosecutor, Andrew Polovin, Monday afternoon. (AP Photo/Tom Gianni)
A fire at the FAA's Chicago Center, in suburban Aurora, has halted all air traffic in or out of major airports in Chicago and Detroit. (WGN)
This view of air traffic over the United States shows a virtual hole in the sky over Chicago. (FlightRadar24)
A fire truck seen earlier Friday morning at the burning building. (WGN)
Employees seen outside the facility after being evacuated. (WGN)
The Chicago Center seen from the air. (WGN)
There is virtually no air traffic over Chicago, home to both O'Hare International (the world's busiest airport) and Midway Airport. (FlightAware)
A United Airlines jet takes off from O'Hare International Airport on September 19, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. In 2013, 67 million passengers passed through O'Hare, another 20 million passed through Chicago's Midway Airport, and the two airports combined moved more than 1.4 million tons of air cargo. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Ann Walden and her 15 month-old daughter Delphine wait in-line after their flight to Baton Rouge was delayed at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago, Friday, Sept. 26, 2014. All flights in and out of Chicago's two airports were halted Friday after a fire at a suburban air traffic control facility sent delays and cancellations rippling through the U.S. air travel network. Authorities said the blaze was intentionally set by a contract employee of the Federal Aviation Administration and had no ties to terrorism. (AP Photo/Paul Beaty)
Dennis McCormack of Rockaway, N.J. checks the departure board only to find out that his flight to Newark, N.J. has been canceled at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago, Friday, Sept. 26, 2014. All flights in and out of Chicago's two airports were halted Friday after a fire at a suburban air traffic control facility sent delays and cancellations rippling through the U.S. air travel network. Authorities said the blaze was intentionally set by a contract employee of the Federal Aviation Administration and had no ties to terrorism. (AP Photo/Paul Beaty)
Dennis McCormack of Rockaway, N.J. checks the departure board only to find out that his flight to Newark, N.J. has been canceled at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago, Friday, Sept. 26, 2014. All flights in and out of Chicago's two airports were halted Friday after a fire at a suburban air traffic control facility sent delays and cancellations rippling through the U.S. air travel network. Authorities said the blaze was intentionally set by a contract employee of the Federal Aviation Administration and had no ties to terrorism. (AP Photo/Paul Beaty)
Kanna Ortiz 4, waits in a line after her flight back home to New Jersey was delayed at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago, Friday, Sept. 26, 2014. All flights in and out of Chicago's two airports were halted Friday after a fire at a suburban air traffic control facility sent delays and cancellations rippling through the U.S. air travel network. Authorities said the blaze was intentionally set by a contract employee of the Federal Aviation Administration and had no ties to terrorism. (AP Photo/Paul Beaty)
Breanne Eging checks on her flight to Greenville, South Carolina at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago, Friday, Sept. 26, 2014. All flights in and out of Chicago's two airports were halted Friday after a fire at a suburban air traffic control facility sent delays and cancellations rippling through the U.S. air travel network. Authorities said the blaze was intentionally set by a contract employee of the Federal Aviation Administration and had no ties to terrorism. (AP Photo/Paul Beaty)
Ann Walden plays with her 15 month-old daughter Delphine while waiting in-line after their flight to Baton Rouge was delayed at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago, Friday, Sept. 26, 2014. All flights in and out of Chicago's two airports were halted Friday after a fire at a suburban air traffic control facility sent delays and cancellations rippling through the U.S. air travel network. Authorities said the blaze was intentionally set by a contract employee of the Federal Aviation Administration and had no ties to terrorism. (AP Photo/Paul Beaty)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Stranded passengers pass through a deserted area of O'Hare International Airport on September 27, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. O'Hare was forced to cancel more than 1,500 fights yesterday and more than 600 today after a contract worker sabotaged a suburban air traffic control center yesterday morning. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: The arrival and departure display at O'Hare International Airport shows a list of cancelled flights on September 27, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. O'Hare was forced to cancel more than 1,500 fights yesterday and more than 600 today after a contract worker sabotaged a suburban air traffic control center yesterday morning. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Stranded passengers wait for flights at O'Hare International Airport on September 27, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. O'Hare was forced to cancel more than 1,500 fights yesterday and more than 600 today after a contract worker sabotaged a suburban air traffic control center yesterday morning. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Stranded passengers wait for flights in a deserted area of O'Hare International Airport on September 27, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. O'Hare was forced to cancel more than 1,500 fights yesterday and more than 600 today after a contract worker sabotaged a suburban air traffic control center yesterday morning. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: The arrival and departure display at O'Hare International Airport shows a list of cancelled flights on September 27, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. O'Hare was forced to cancel more than 1,500 fights yesterday and more than 600 today after a contract worker sabotaged a suburban air traffic control center yesterday morning. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: A plane sits at a mostly deserted terminal at O'Hare International Airport on September 27, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. O'Hare was forced to cancel more than 1,500 fights yesterday and more than 600 today after a contract worker sabotaged a suburban air traffic control center yesterday morning. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Stranded passengers wait for flights at O'Hare International Airport on September 27, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. O'Hare was forced to cancel more than 1,500 fights yesterday and more than 600 today after a contract worker sabotaged a suburban air traffic control center yesterday morning. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Stranded passengers wait for flights at O'Hare International Airport on September 27, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. O'Hare was forced to cancel more than 1,500 fights yesterday and more than 600 today after a contract worker sabotaged a suburban air traffic control center yesterday morning. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Nikolas Acevedo, 8, of Bourbonnais waits in line with his family for a rebooked flight at Midway Airport due to cancellations and delays as a result of a fire at Chicago Air Route Traffic Control Center in Aurora, Friday, September 26, 2014, in Chicago. He and his family are heading to Orlando. The fire was deliberately started at an FAA radar center by a disgruntled worker. (Anthony Souffle/Chicago Tribune/MCT via Getty Images)
United Airline passenger Ron Mitchell of Chicago talks with an airline attendant as he joins a line of those looking to rebook their canceled flights after a small fire at the Air Route Traffic Control Center in Aurora disrupted air service though out the region Friday, Sept. 26, 2014 in Terminal 1 at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago. The fire was deliberately set at an FAA radar center by a disgruntled worker. (Anthony Souffle/Chicago Tribune/MCT via Getty Images)
An American Airlines passenger talks on her phone as she stands in a line with other passengers to rebook their canceled flights after a small fire at the Air Route Traffic Control Center in Aurora disrupted air service though out the region Friday, Sept. 26, 2014 in Terminal 3 at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago. The fire was deliberately started at an FAA radar center by a disgruntled worker. (Anthony Souffle/Chicago Tribune/MCT via Getty Images)
'She's so tired right now,' said Kelsey Stephenson of Los Angeles about her dog, Daisy, as the two spent the morning of their shared birthday stranded when their flight home was canceled after a small fire at the Air Route Traffic Control Center in Aurora disrupted air service though out the region Friday, Sept. 26, 2014 in Terminal 3 at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago. The fire was deliberately started at an FAA radar center by a disgruntled worker. (Anthony Souffle/Chicago Tribune/MCT via Getty Images)
American Airlines ticketing agents pass out free bottles of water to passengers waiting in line to rebook their canceled flights after a small fire at the Air Route Traffic Control Center in Aurora disrupted air service though out the region Friday, Sept. 26, 2014 in Terminal 3 at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago. The fire was deliberately started at an FAA radar center by a disgruntled worker. (Anthony Souffle/Chicago Tribune/MCT via Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Peter and Elana Vlahos watch a movie while their parents try to reschedule a flight to Los Angeles at O'Hare International Airport on September 26, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. All flights in and out of Chicago's O'Hare and Midway airports were halted this morning because of a suspected arson fire at a suburban Chicago air traffic control facility. The Vlahos family was flying to Los Angeles for a movie premier scheduled for tomorrow morning. They were told the earliest that they could reschedule a flight would be tomorrow afternoon. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: A passenger walks through O'Hare International Airport on September 26, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. All flights in and out of Chicago's O'Hare and Midway airports were halted this morning because of a suspected arson fire at a suburban Chicago air traffic control facility. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Passenger wait in line to reschedule flights at O'Hare International Airport on September 26, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. All flights in and out of Chicago's O'Hare and Midway airports were halted this morning because of a suspected arson fire at a suburban Chicago air traffic control facility. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Passenger wait in line to reschedule flights at O'Hare International Airport on September 26, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. All flights in and out of Chicago's O'Hare and Midway airports were halted this morning because of a suspected arson fire at a suburban Chicago air traffic control facility. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Passengers try to reschedule flights at O'Hare International Airport on September 26, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. All flights in and out of Chicago's O'Hare and Midway airports were halted this morning because of a suspected arson fire at a suburban Chicago air traffic control facility. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Passenger wait in line to reschedule flights at O'Hare International Airport on September 26, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. All flights in and out of Chicago's O'Hare and Midway airports were halted this morning because of a suspected arson fire at a suburban Chicago air traffic control facility. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Passengers try to reschedule flights at O'Hare International Airport on September 26, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. All flights in and out of Chicago's O'Hare and Midway airports were halted this morning because of a suspected arson fire at a suburban Chicago air traffic control facility. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Passengers arrive to catch flights at O'Hare International Airport's on September 26, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. All flights in and out of Chicago's O'Hare and Midway airports have been halted this morning because of a fire at a suburban Chicago air traffic control facility. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Passengers arrive to catch flights at O'Hare International Airport's on September 26, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. All flights in and out of Chicago's O'Hare and Midway airports have been halted this morning because of a fire at a suburban Chicago air traffic control facility. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Passengers arrive to catch flights at O'Hare International Airport's on September 26, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. All flights in and out of Chicago's O'Hare and Midway airports have been halted this morning because of a fire at a suburban Chicago air traffic control facility. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Graphic charts out total flight traffic at O'Hare and Midway airports, and shows the causes for delay at both sites.
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Passengers wait for flights at O'Hare International Airport's on September 26, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. All flights in and out of Chicago's O'Hare and Midway airports have been halted this morning because of a fire at a suburban Chicago air traffic control facility. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Passengers wait for flights at O'Hare International Airport's on September 26, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. All flights in and out of Chicago's O'Hare and Midway airports have been halted this morning because of a fire at a suburban Chicago air traffic control facility. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
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AURORA, Ill. (AP) -- A suburban Chicago air traffic center reopened early Monday, more than two weeks after damage from a deliberately set fire forced the cancellation of thousands of flights and disrupted travel nationwide, federal officials said.

A full shift of air traffic controllers at the Chicago En Route Center in Aurora resumed control of the center's airspace from adjoining centers between midnight and 1 a.m. on Monday, the Federal Aviation Administration said in a news release.

About 200 Aurora facility workers traveled to other FAA air traffic centers since the Sept. 26 incident. The FAA said those workers will be returning from those locations Monday.

Authorities have said a contract worker cut cables and set fire to a basement telecommunications room before trying to commit suicide by slitting his throat. The disruption forced an hours-long shutdown of O'Hare and Midway international airports that day.

FAA technical team will remain in Aurora until Tuesday to monitor system performance and help ensure a smooth transition, the FAA said. The agency said the event has prompted it to conduct a 30-day review of contingency plans and security protocols for its major facilities.

The agency's response to the incident drew criticism from some, including Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who said the FAA needed to "work harder and better and smarter" to restore normal airport operations.

Brian Howard, 36, of Naperville is charged in federal court with felony destruction of aircraft or aircraft facilities. His defense attorney, Ron Safer, has said Howard made a "tragic mistake."

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