Snow and ice grounds 6,500 flights in US

Severe weather condition leaves thousands of travellers stranded across the US and UK

Bitingly cold temperatures and heavy snowfall have been affecting travel all across the globe over the past couple of days. And based on recent forecasts, further snow and ice are expected.

Snow and cold are complicating air transport — bodorka / Shutterstock Snow and ice grounds 6,500 flights in US
Snow and cold are complicating air transport — bodorka / Shutterstock

Most means of travel are experiencing disruptions, hitting ground, water, and air transport alike. Some airports are reporting difficulties due to cold temperatures as they struggle to sweep the snow.

At London Heathrow, a number of short-haul British Airways flights were cancelled today. “Due to the adverse weather conditions predicted, we have been forced to cancel and merge a number of short-haul flights today to ensure that we protect the rest of our schedule,” said a British Airways spokesperson.

“Safety is always our priority, and we’re working hard to keep our operation moving. We’re sorry that some of our services are being delayed by the weather conditions.”

However, cities all around England are facing difficulties with regard to the recent weather developments. Bristol Airport remains closed till 12 pm on Friday, 1 February, with further updates to follow. All passengers are advised to seek the most recent information relating to their travel plans.

Similarly, travel in the US has been badly affected by the polar vortex sweeping across the country. From Tuesday to Thursday, the US saw over 6,500 flight cancellations, according to FlightAware.

The Midwestern US has been experiencing extremely low temperatures. A United spokesman said that flights had to be cancelled to protect their workers from exposure to the disagreeable weather.

Moreover, some airlines have taken extra measures to minimise the effects of the weather on their employees. For example, United has arranged for heated shelters while American provided warming vans with hot beverages.