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Hundreds of holiday travelers were stranded on grounded planes for hours Christmas Eve after heavy snow in Chicago led to a logjam at the Milwaukee airport.

An estimated 150 passengers on United Airlines Flight 952 from Los Angeles -- one of seven United flights diverted to Milwaukee from Chicago's O'Hare International Airport -- had to wait more than five hours to get off the plane, airline spokesman Tony Molinaro said.

And passengers on Flight 1536 from Orange County, Calif., said they had to wait on board more than five hours at Mitchell International Airport, even as the drinking water apparently ran out and the toilets stopped working.

Both flights were canceled.

At American Airlines, one flight was diverted to Milwaukee from Nashville, Tenn., and spent 5 1/2 hours on the ground, spokesman Bill Dreslin said.

Passengers were able to get off the plane for at least part of the time, he said, but he didn't know how long.

The United flight from Orange County landed in Milwaukee at about 5:30 p.m., but passengers weren't let off until after 11 p.m., said passenger Joseph Vranich of Irvine, Calif.

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