Flight Cancellations Top 16,000 Since Monday


The worst of the winter storm that slammed the United States this week may have passed, but flights remained a mess across much of the nation for a third day in a row.

More than 2,000 of the nation’s flights for Thursday already had been canceled by noon ET, according to flight-tracking company FlightAware.com.

The storm’s total tally since Monday: more than 16,000.

In addition to Thursday’s count, there were 7,495 flights canceled on Wednesday, more than 6,700 on Tuesday and about 750 on Monday, according to FlightAware.

The prognosis for significant improvement Thursday wasn’t good.

Not only were Chicago’s busy O’Hare and Midway airports still struggling to resume normal operations as of mid-afternoon, but Continental also announced plans to halt most of its Houston flight operations into Friday.

The carrier said on its website that it will halt most of its Houston flights as of 6 p.m. local time and that it would not resume operations there before noon CT Friday. That came as a new round of wintry weather begins to affect south Texas.

Houston Intercontinental is the biggest hub for Continental, now a subsidiary of the United Continental holding company that also includes United.

At least two other airlines — US Airways and Central American carrier TACA — also said they were grounding operations at Houston Intercontinental.

US Airways said it will suspend flights there after 3:40 p.m. CT and does not plan to resume operations until 9 a.m. CT on Friday. TACA said it will not operate any Houston flights today or Friday, according to the Houston Airports System.

(Source: USA Today)