Extreme fire danger expected for several days

Weather causes flight cancellations at Will Rogers World Airport

OKLAHOMA CITY - A winter storm with freezing rain and sleet is not only wreaking havoc on area roadways but causing problems for air travelers.

More than 30 flights have been cancelled Wednesday at Will Rogers World Airport, including Southwest Airlines, which cancelled all inbound and outbound flights.

Several other airlines, including Alaska Air and Frontier, have cancelled some flights because of the freezing rain and sleet impacting the metro area, according to airport spokesperson Karen Carney. However, most flights in and out of Will Rogers continue, albeit on delays.

"A lot of different things," said Carney. "We are definitely impacted by weather at other airports as well."

According to FlightAware, a flight tracking website, Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport led the nation Wednesday with more than 60 cancellations and more than 370 delays, as the weather system made its way through the central part of the United States, causing a ripple effect for flights out of Oklahoma City.

"I’m trying to get to my hotel, but my luggage hasn’t arrived" from Dallas, said Melinda Ando of Calgary, Alberta.

In town for work until Friday, Ando says she's been waiting for several hours for another inbound Dallas flight to arrive in the city with her luggage. But times have continued to change, leaving her jokingly wonder what the deal is with the weather.

"This is interesting that the city is shut down; where exactly is the snow storm?” she said. "As a Canadian, right, this is our way of life for about six months."

The woes not only plaguing inbound Oklahoma City travelers, but those trying to get out, like Karen Land.

"There’s nothing else available tonight. All flights to Orlando have left," said Land, of Oklahoma City, whose Frontier flight never made it to Oklahoma.

So after $400 dollars for another ticket and three Uber rides later, the Oklahoma City resident is keeping her hopes up to land in Orlando Thursday.

"We’ll get there. We will get there, eventually.”

Will Rogers is reminding travelers deicing delays are common, given airlines have flights trying to depart at the same time. Other factors may cause airlines to cancel or delay flights in spite of conditions being clear at Will Rogers.

Despite the cancellations, airport operations are continuing in to the evening, with maintenance crews standing by to treat and clear runways, taxiways and de-ice planes. However, Carney said, that could change.

"Our goal is to make sure we have runways that are operational, so planes can get in and out," she said. "Based on some of the things that are continuing to come through the area, we’re not out of the woods, probably until Friday."

Be sure to check your flight status prior to traveling to WRWA at flyokc.com, FlightAware.com or the airlines’ web and social media sites.