As Hurricane Ida brings thundering rain on the East Coast, airports are facing pressure. Newark, JFK, and LaGuardia have all faced serious flooding, causing flights to be canceled and terminal sections to close off. United has suspended operations from its hub in Newark, causing hundreds of canceled flights in the last few hours. Here’s more on the situation.
Hurricane Ida has caused pouring rain over the East Coast, especially New York and New Jersey, only days after pummeling the Gulf Coast. The heavy rainfall has caused flooding across New York, and its busy airports are no exception. Visuals from passengers in the terminal show lower sections filling up with water, severely slowing operations.
Newark has been the worst affected, with the terminal, ramp area, and luggage sections all flooding. However, LaGuardia and JFK have been hit by the heavy rain too, disrupting operations but not shutting down the airport, as at Newark.
Come for the flights.
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United suspended flights out of Newark at 08:00 AM due to the disruptions, resulting in over 400 canceled flights, according to Reuters. Flights are expected to later in the afternoon, with no flights departing at the time of writing. There have been several landings, according to RadarBox.com, meaning that the airport is likely to resume services soon.
After wreaking havoc along the Gulf Coast, especially Louisiana, the remnants of Ida have hit the New York City area too. Intense flooding has led to over a dozen deaths across the region, with fears that this figure could rise. Passengers have also narrated horror stories of being trapped in aircraft on the ground for hours to the situation, with no way to deplane.
The situation has left airlines scrambling, with thousands of flights delayed and hundreds canceled. This comes just a day before the start of Labor Day weekend, a time that airlines were hoping to see a surge in air travel. Now, flights flying or connecting through the East and Gulf Coast are severely delayed, disrupting travel plans for tens of thousands.
As the situation slowly starts to ease, the region will have to deal with the aftermath of the deluge of rain. It could be hours or even days before Newark will return to full domestic capacity, disrupting flights into the crucial weekend.
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For passengers due to fly in the last or next 48 hours, airlines have issued their usual travel waivers. This means all travelers have limited time to rebook their flights for free, request a refund (if the service is canceled), or opt for a travel voucher.
In case you have connecting travel through any of the hard-hit airports, rerouting is the best choice. Passengers in the New York City area who must travel can opt for nearby airports instead, but there are severe traffic jams due to the rain. For now, remaining safe is the most important objective for all those affected.
Has your travel been hit by Hurricane Ida? Let us know in the comments.