When hurricanes or tropical storms threaten the Gulf or Atlantic coastal areas of the US, passengers across the country may be affected by delayed, canceled, and rerouted flights even in areas far from the storms. Passengers can keep storm problems from seriously affecting their travel plans by following the advice provided by their airline or from selected online travel resources.
On occasion, a hurricane may cause widespread flight cancellations like when they threaten a major city, especially a city serves as a hub airport for a major airline. This was the case when hurricane Ike struck Houston and caused its airports to close. Continental has one of its major hubs in Houston, and the airport closure affected hundreds of flights and thousands of passengers. The effects of the storm on the airlines may last for days as a storm moves across the country, causing problems that may delay or cancel flights for days.
If you plan to travel by air when a hurricane or tropical storm threatens to strike land, you should take the time to do the following:
* Check with your airline to see if your flight is affected
* Check the airline’s web site to see if they are posting special notices about the storm
* Keep track of storm forecasts
* Be prepared to have your flight delayed, rerouted, or canceled
One thing that passengers should not worry about when major storms approach is increased accident risks. Unlike some weather hazards that give airlines and pilots little warning, major storms are usually discovered days before they reach land, and airlines are able to plan ahead and avoid exposing aircraft to the more severe parts of the storm.
For more information about how passengers should deal with disruptions from hurricanes and other major storms, visit storms.airsafe.org.