As hurricane ian approaches the coast of the united states, thousands of flights have been called off throughout the country. As the category 4 hurricane neared florida on tuesday and wednesday, almost 1,900 flights had to be canceled. On tuesday, more than 350 flights were canceled.
Cancellations and delays are necessary due to hurricane ian.
As florida prepares for hurricane ian, over 2,000 flights in and out of the united states as well as flights inside the country have been canceled. Already having wreaked havoc in cuba, the storm crossed into the gulf of mexico on tuesday and is expected to continue doing so. It is anticipated that it would strike the tampa region in florida.
The effect that the hurricane had on aviation operations in Florida is shown by data from FlightAware. Both Tampa International Airport (TPA) and Southwest Florida International Airport (RSW) were among the worst-affected airports, and they both canceled more than 95% of flights coming into or leaving the airport on Wednesday.
Over 700 arrivals and departures were cancelled at Orlando International Airport (MCO), while Miami International Airport (MIA), which is not in the course that Hurricane Ian is projected to take, canceled over 40 percent of its operations, which amounted to approximately 450 flights.
The following airports in the area were closed on Tuesday: Tampa International Airport (TPA), Sarasota Bradenton Airport (SRQ), and St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport (PIE). Additionally, Orlando International Airport (MCO) will be closed on Wednesday.
Airlines’ concern updates
Travelers in the United States have been kept up to speed on the situation by major airlines in the country, many of which have canceled hundreds of flights as a result of Hurricane Ian.
Since Tuesday, Southwest Airlines has not been operating any flights departing from Tampa, Sarasota, or Fort Myers; the earliest that service will resume is on Thursday. The airline has so far canceled nearly 400 flights on Wednesday and 350 flights on Thursday. JetBlue, which has also canceled around a quarter of its flights, has joined the company in making these cancellations.
American Airlines has warned passengers not to go to certain airports in Florida and the western Caribbean at this time. The airline will not charge passengers for checked luggage and will set a maximum rate in order to assist individuals who have been negatively impacted.
A number of other airlines, including Alaska Airlines, Spirit Airlines, United Airlines, and Delta Air Lines, have said that they would not charge impacted passengers any costs for booking or canceling flights.
Numerous thousands of holdups
The storm has also created severe disruptions to airports that are still operational, which has led to a considerable number of aircraft delays. On Tuesday, there were over 3,000 flight delays throughout the United States, and it is anticipated that this number will continue to climb when the hurricane reaches landfall on Wednesday.
In an interview with Forbes, Kathleen Bangs, a representative for FlightAware, said,
“There won’t be many people who fly by plane who won’t be in some way impacted by Ian this week, particularly if intense storms that persist a long time or for a long distance and heavy rain hit Atlanta or any of the other big airports. As Ian starts to directly touch the US, there is a good risk that we are still staring down the barrel of a significant increase in flight delays and cancellations.”
The impacts of Hurricane Ian are likely to be felt in a far larger area than just the Sunshine State because of the state of Florida’s prominence as a hub for airports.