Hurricane Sandy Cancels 12,000 Flights Through Wednesday
The nation’s airlines have cancelled over 12,000 flights through Wednesday as a result of Hurricane Sandy, leaving thousands of travelers stranded across the nation. By noon Monday, the storm was producing sustained winds of 90 mph (145 km/h), up from 75 mph (120 km/h) on Sunday night.
According to FlightAware.com, a flight-tracking service, over 12,000 flights have been cancelled as of noon on Monday. While most of the flights impacted by the storm are in the Northeastern United States, flights from other areas of the country with destinations in the region have also been cancelled.
The cancellations are costing the airlines millions of dollars in lost revenue and additional expense, and stranded travelers are facing additional costs as well, including unanticipated hotel expenses, since airlines are not responsible for lodging costs for passengers impacted by weather delays.
American Airlines has suspended operations in the affected area through midday Wednesday but some carriers are more optimistic. Delta Air Lines plans to resume service midday Tuesday but this is subject to change based on local conditions. US Airways has cancelled all flights in and out of New York, Newark, Philadelphia, and Washington D.C. through Tuesday and has already announced 23 cancellations for Wednesday.
New York’s three airports, LaGuardia, John F. Kennedy International, and Newark Liberty International, are officially open but all flights on Monday have been cancelled. Farther south, Philadelphia International Airport has shut down completely.
Elsewhere in the region, Bradley International Airport in Connecticut suspended operations Monday afternoon and New York’s Metro-North and Long Island Railroad commuter rail systems shut down Sunday evening at 7 p.m.
“A turn toward the northwest is expected soon,” the National Hurricane Center’s 11 a.m. advisory reported, to be followed by another turn toward the west northwest. “The center of Sandy is expected to make landfall along or just south of the southern New Jersey coast this evening or tonight.” Blizzard warnings have been posted in several states including Maryland, Virginia, and West Virginia.
(Photo: Jonathan Spira)