Economy

Hurricane Irma: Thousands of Florida flights canceled, with more expected

Hurricane Irma: Thousands of Florida flights canceled, with more expected”

The flight grounding in Florida comes just two weeks after Hurricane Harvey devastated Texas, shutting down operations in Houston's busiest airports.

Airlines are winding down operations in Florida as Hurricane Irma approaches the state, and travelers are scrambling to get where they want to go before the storm.

An online search shows flights from South Florida costing more than $1000 people have been posting about their ticket prices on social media.

Officials at Key West International Airport, said they would suspend commercial operations at the end of the day Thursday, and Miami International Airport advised travelers it will halt operations at the airport when winds reach 55 miles per hour.

"Shame on you @delta", Dow wrote on Twitter.

For those trying to evacuate by air, cancellations are beginning.

Delta denied raising airfare prices and attributed the mishap to Dow's usage of Expedia.

She later tweeted Delta officials contacted her and the situation had been resolved.

Senator Bill Nelson, a Florida Democrat who had been pressuring airlines to aid in evacuating Florida residents, spoke with airline executives on Thursday and urged them to add more flight outs of Florida.

Big Picture: JetBlue made the right decision to cap prices for flights out of Florida ahead of the hurricane.

Other airlines have kept fares competitive as the number of passengers trying to flee Florida increased dramatically this week. However, there are some airlines that have followed JetBlue's lead. Several flights from Chicago, New York and Boston were already sold out at the time of this article's publication. American, Southwest and other airlines are moving all of their operational aircraft out of the region to wait out the storm.

Following the destruction from Hurricane Irma, the assessment of the aftermath was already underway at South Florida airports late Sunday. Airport closures would be impacting American Airlines flights to Fort Myers, Tampa, Orlando and Tallahassee through Tuesday.

The cancellations came after Florida Gov. Rick Scott ordered all state colleges and universities closed through Monday in order to support shelter and emergency relief efforts.

In Miami-Dade County, the southeastern-most county on the US mainland with more than 2.7 million residents, about 150,000 people so far have been ordered to evacuate. They say driving to the airport was hectic, with bumper-to-bumper traffic on major highways.

If it is unsafe or not possible to do so, they will be centrally located in the airport. "We will get you out".



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