Superstorm Sandy: Disrupted Flights, Flooded Airports


Superstorm Sandy continued to wreak havoc in the northeast early Tuesday morning, with airline flights to all of the major airports still disrupted and not expected to resume normal operations for several days. The storm is having far-reaching effects throughout the U.S. and internationally as flights into the U.S. will remain grounded for several days. As the storm continues to move northwestward, airports as far west as Pittsburgh, Detroit, Cleveland and Chicago are being directly impacted by Sandy’s winds and precipitation. Winds in Cleveland gusted to 68 mph early Tuesday morning. Coastal Connecticut and Long Island were particularly hard hit, with significant flooding expected at Connecticut’s coastal airports of Bridgeport, New Haven and Groton. A second surge event was expected at high tide on Tuesday morning, but no detailed information on the degree of airport flooding was available Tuesday morning.

FlightAware reported Monday night that more than 13,000 flights had been cancelled and won’t likely be rescheduled for at least a day or two. The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey said Monday that travelers shouldn’t even try to get to Kennedy, Newark, LaGuardia and Stewart airports. Northeast airport closures rippled through internationalflight schedules, stranding passengers as far away as Hong Kong. Businessman Alan Shrem told The Associated Press that his Cathay Pacific flight from Hong Kong was cancelled until further notice. He was expecting to be delayed in Hong Kong for up to a week. International airlines are especially heavily impacted because many have to pay for hotel accommodations for stranded passengers. “Every day this goes on, you’re seeing combined losses to the airlines of roughly $10 million,” Simon Calder, travel editor of the UK’s The Independent newspaper, told The Associated Press on Monday. Domestically, JetBlue cancelled 1,200 flights from Sunday through Tuesday, while Delta Air Lines cancelled 2,100 flights over the next few days.