Holiday travel begins as storms loom

JIA doesn't expect travel delays with predicted storm

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - A mean winter blast is sweeping through parts of the country, blanketing areas with snow and heavy rain, and it's caused hundreds of flight cancellations in Dallas and Oklahoma.

The storm is pushing its way east before the Thanksgiving holiday and it could impact flights at Jacksonville International Airport.

JIA Spokesperson Michael Stewart told Channel 4 that there should be minimal impact from the storms on the Jacksonville International Airport.

"Rarely do we get hundreds of people stranded at the airport," said Stewart. "That happens at hub airports where flights are in and out and people have to change planes. There may be long delays or flight cancellations. It happens here but it's very, very rare."

Stewart said it's not usual for JIA to be significantly impacted by weather related delays and cancelations.

Stewart told Channel 4 that since JIA is not a major hub airport, where passengers are constantly connecting to other planes, he doesn't expect the approaching storm to cause any significant delays to passengers departing from JIA.

"Because we are an origin and destination airport when they're coming to the airport, they either know that their flight is going to be on-time or has been canceled, or it may not be until it's in the air when it's diverted," said Stewart.

AAA estimates 43 million travelers are expected to travel for Thanksgiving. The wintry blast is causing headaches for some of them from weather related accidents out west, to airport delays in the mid-west.

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Stewart said if the weather causes significant delays for JIA on Tuesday and into the night, the airport's concessions stands may stay open later to accommodate stranded passengers. Stewart also advises travelers and people who are picking up people here to check with their airline carrier ahead of time to see if there are any flight delays or cancellations.

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