Around 1,000 US flights canceled as wintry weather rumbles

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More than 1,000 Monday flights have been canceled across the United States as wintry weather shifts to the center of the country.

So far, most cancellations are from Dallas Love Field and Dallas-Fort Worth International Airports in Texas.

By 5:30 p.m. ET, just over 1,000 flights within, to or from the United States had been canceled on Monday, according to flight tracking site FlightAware, with more than 4,100 delays.

About half of those cancellations are for Southwest Airlines flights. The Dallas-based airline, which experienced a slump in operations over the holidays, had canceled about 12% of its Monday schedule — about 480 flights, according to FlightAware.

Southwest Airlines did not immediately respond to a request for comment. As recently as Monday morning, CEO Bob Jordan was outlining fixes to prevent a repeat of the airline’s Christmas travel slump.

By contrast, fellow Texas-based carrier American Airlines canceled 6% of its Monday schedule. American had canceled about 200 US flights as of 5:30 p.m. ET on Monday.

Regional carrier SkyWest had canceled more than 140 flights.

Cancellations were already piling up for Tuesday flights, with around 800 systemwide cancellations by early Monday evening. Southwest and American had already canceled 8% to 10% of their Tuesday schedules.

In addition to widespread cancellations in Dallas on Monday and Tuesday, around 200 flights on Monday were also canceled to and from Denver International Airport in Colorado. As of Tuesday, more than 100 flights to and from Austin, Texas had already been canceled Monday evening.

A winter storm warning is in effect for much of Texas, including the Dallas-Fort Worth area, through 6 a.m. central time Wednesday.

Southwest Airlines issued a winter weather waiver on Sunday and extended waivers Monday noon to a dozen airports in Texas, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Arkansas and Kentucky. The latest exemptions apply to travel from January 30 to February 1.

American Airlines on Sunday issued a waiver for Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW) International Airport that applies to travel from Jan. 29 through Feb. 2.

Delta and United have also issued weather waivers. Their Monday operations were not significantly affected by the cancellations.

Dallas Love Field tweeted Monday that its team “stands ready to treat and clean surfaces to enable safe operations.” DFW was also preparing for bad weather.

Both airports have urged travelers to check with their airlines for flight status before heading to the airport.

The weather will also make road conditions hazardous. Up to a half inch of ice or sleet is possible in parts of Texas, the National Weather Service warns. Ice accumulation is expected in at least 15 states, the National Weather Service’s Weather Prediction Center said.

“If you must travel, slow down and exercise extreme caution, especially when approaching bridges and overpasses,” the Texas warning reads.

Motorists are advised to have a flashlight, food and water in their vehicle in case of an emergency. Here’s more information on what to pack for winter driving.

Top image: Motorists in Dallas face wintery conditions. 1 credit

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