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More than 1700 flights were cancelled as a winter storm swept across the US, creating major travel disruption. It's the biggest snowstorm to hit America in 30 years and officials predict record snowfall amounts in Minnesota and Michigan.
Storms are expected to bring snow, ice and freezing rain across parts of the Southwest and Midwest. Airlines have issued rebooking waivers for some passengers with tickets to, from or through affected airports.
Due to a fierce winter storm that hit the US and closed airports, more than 1700 flights were cancelled. As a result, travelers faced logistical chaos while airlines scrambled to rebook their schedules.
The number of cancelled flights served as a stark reminder that even though the US is used to bad weather in December, things don't always go as planned. Travelers were left waiting in airports for hours while they tried to board their flights or rebook their tickets.
On Thursday afternoon, a family of four from Portland, Oregon was due to arrive in Iowa for their long holiday weekend with their 4-year-old granddaughter. However, their plans were derailed when they found themselves stuck at Chicago's two major airports on Wednesday night due to winter storm conditions. Tammy and Dennis Ellenburg were among the thousands whose flights had to be postponed or rerouted due to inclement weather conditions.
On Friday, temperatures are expected to moderate slightly but remain frigid and windy - creating a challenge for travelers. That's why it's essential to be prepared ahead of time.
Investing in a quality coat and keeping it dry is essential. Look for water-resistant jackets, and make sure the hood is securely fastened.
You should invest in a pair of warm boots or shoes that will keep your feet toasty warm even on snowy days. Furthermore, you should have extra socks, gloves and hats on hand just in case you get caught in the rain or snow.
If you can't afford to purchase new gear, you can help those with less by donating your old items. Drop off coats and other winter gear at any local community center or homeless shelter to share the warmth.
Another possibility is volunteering at a soup kitchen or shelter. These organizations always appreciate any assistance, particularly during the holidays.
If you're a frequent flyer, it may be beneficial to open your airline's app before visiting the ticket counter. This way, you can stay informed when flights are cancelled or delayed and bypass waiting in long lines for refunds.
Wednesday morning, more than 1700 flights were cancelled due to a winter storm that hit the US. Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport, Denver International Airport and Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport were particularly hard hit. Toronto Pearson International Airport in Canada as well as Chicago O'Hare International Airport and Milwaukee Mitchell International Airport experienced delays or cancellations as well.
From 8 p.m. on Monday, January 13th a winter storm warning has been issued for parts of Colorado's Front Range foothills, Fort Collins, Estes Park and Boulder as well as west Denver suburbs like Arvada. According to the weather service, wind chills are forecasted to be well below zero degrees Fahrenheit.
In addition to snow and ice, travelers could face windy conditions with winds reaching 20 mph in some places. Temperatures could drop as low as 50 degrees in parts of the central High Plains. Furthermore, a bomb cyclone is expected to develop near the Great Lakes later this week with potential for severe weather or blizzard conditions.
DIA's snowplowing team is working hard to keep runways clear, though some short delays may occur before takeoff as deicing operations commence. To ensure a smooth journey, passengers are asked to check their flight status regularly and allow extra time on the roads since traffic will be heavy.
Tuesday night and Wednesday afternoon, Denver can expect heavy snowfall of up to 10 inches. A winter storm warning is in effect for the Front Range until 5 p.m.
Storm-related delays or cancellations are expected at more than a dozen airports across America, including Minneapolis-Saint Paul International, Denver International and Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport. FlightAware reports 189 flights delayed or canceled at Minneapolis-Saint Paul International, 123 in Denver and 104 in Detroit.
Southwest Airlines was the worst hit, having 138 flight cancellations (or 28%) on Tuesday evening, while Frontier Airlines experienced 28. Both airlines have issued a travel advisory on their websites that lists affected airports and waives change fees for those looking to reschedule their flights.
As a winter storm hit the US, over 1700 flights were cancelled - with the greatest disruptions occurring in Chicago and Denver. Flight tracker FlightAware reported Thursday that more than a dozen major airports experienced triple-digit cancellations, such as Seattle-Tacoma (210), New York's LaGuardia (171), and Chicago O'Hare (171).
Storm-related power outages occurred to approximately 350,000 customers in Texas as trees covered with ice collapsed onto power lines. The National Weather Service has issued blizzard warnings for parts of the Upper Midwest and Southeast Michigan, warning of up to two feet of snow in some locations.
On Thursday morning, several schools throughout the region announced they would be closed due to severe weather, including the University of Detroit Mercy. Furthermore, several sports teams, including NBA's Detroit Pistons, postponed games due to the storm.
On Wednesday, a powerful coast-to-coast storm hit Michigan and is forecast to drop an estimated foot of snow. The heaviest accumulation is expected in parts of west-central and northern Michigan where up to one foot could accumulate.
On Wednesday, FlightAware reported that more than half of flights scheduled to land at Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport had been cancelled or delayed. Other affected airports included Toronto Pearson International Airport in Canada, Chicago O'Hare International Airport and Milwaukee Mitchell International Airport as well.
The weather service warned that wind gusts of up to 60 miles per hour could create travel issues in Minnesota, which is facing its largest snowfall in 30 years. A blizzard warning was in effect for the area.
If you're traveling this week, be sure to pack a snowstorm emergency kit and discuss with your family what steps they will take in case of a storm. If unsure, call your local emergency authorities for guidance.
For extra protection, stock up on nonperishable food that can be stored outside without refrigeration. Examples of suitable items include crackers, granola bars, canned goods, soups, hot cocoa and instant coffee. You should also bring plenty of water and warm clothing for yourself and your family members; don't forget to pack a flashlight too. It is also wise to check your NOAA weather radio regularly and sign up for local alerts and notifications.
Wednesday's devastating winter storm that began in the US left thousands of travelers stranded, and is forecast to hit the East Coast again Saturday. Already, over 1700 flights have been canceled and disruptions could last through January according to flight tracking website FlightAware.
According to the National Weather Service, up to 75 million people are under winter weather alerts with snowfall expected across many states including Minnesota and the Plains states. The storm could dump up to 2 feet of snow on parts of the upper Midwest and much of America during this storm event, according to forecasts from the National Weather Service.
On Wednesday, more than 1700 flights were cancelled due to the storm that hit the US, including New York's JFK International Airport where more than 25% of departures were delayed or canceled, according to FlightAware. Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport also experienced 189 cancellations early in the day - accounting for 44% of its scheduled departures.
On Friday morning, a bomb cyclone formed over the Great Lakes region and moved through Western New York and parts of northern Illinois, creating blizzard conditions. Unfortunately, at least two people have perished from this storm - including 57-year-old woman who perished at her home near Janesville, Wisconsin.
On Friday, weather-related disruptions caused disruption in air travel as more than 5,100 flights were cancelled and 8,400 delayed, according to flight tracking website FlightAware. At major airports like Cleveland, Buffalo and Chicago, more than half of their departing flights were canceled due to the storm.
Airlines were taking steps to minimize the effect on passengers. Southwest Airlines offered to refund tickets on nonrefundable fares in case of cancellations or delays, while JetBlue Airways gave flight attendants triple pay to pick up trips on Saturday due to a shortage of crews.
Other airlines have rerouted flights to avoid the storm, and some are allowing passengers booked on existing tickets for travel in/from/through parts of the Midwest and Northeast through Dec. 25 to extend their trips until as late as Dec. 29 without paying change fees or fare differences. Air Canada even allows nonrefundable ticket holders to transfer their seats on other aircraft within the same airline without charge.