Emirates flights to US unaffected even as powerful winter storm upsets Americans’ holiday plans

A powerful winter storm that has so far forced the cancellation of about 200 US flights on Thursday has had no impact so far on the Dubai-based Emirates’ US flights

America’s National Weather Service has forecasted 12 to 18 inches of snow for northern New England as the storm moved northeast out of the lower Great Lakes, where it dumped more than a foot of snow in parts of Michigan.

However, Emirates, which flies daily flights to seven American cities has reported no cancellations so far.

“Emirates flights to the United States are operating as scheduled. Weather conditions are being monitored closely and customers are advised to check the status of their flight on emirates.com for possible changes or delays. Flight information will be updated on the website every 5 minutes,” an airline spokesperson said in an emailed response to an Emirates 24/7 query.

The storm has resulted in snarling holiday travel as heavy snow and high winds pummeled the northeastern United States.

The storm front was accompanied by freezing rain and sleet. The Ohio River Valley and the Northeast were under blizzard and winter storm warnings.

Snow will fall in northern New York, Vermont and New Hampshire at up to 2 inches an hour, with winds gusting to 30 mph (48 km per hour), the weather agency said.

About 200 US airline flights scheduled for Thursday were cancelled a day ahead of time, according to FlightAware.com, a website that tracks flights.

American Airlines had the most canceled at about 30. A total of about 1,500 U.S. flights were canceled on Wednesday.

New York state activated its Emergency Operations Center late on Wednesday to deal with the first major storm of the season.

Governor Andrew Cuomo warned the heads of seven utilities they would be held accountable for their performances. Utilities near New York City were criticized for lingering outages after Superstorm Sandy devastated the region in October.

The storm comes as New York state has seen little snow during autumn and winter. Buffalo, New York, was 23 inches below normal for the season before the storm, said Bill Hibbert, a National Weather Service meteorologist.

“We’re short and even this big snow isn’t going to make it up for us,” he said.

The storm dumped record snow in north Texas and Arkansas before it swept through the U.S. South on Christmas Day and then veered north. The system spawned tornadoes and left almost 200,000 people in Arkansas and Alabama without power on Wednesday.

At least five people were killed in road accidents related to the bad weather, police said.


Seven dead as US storm snarls post-Christmas travel



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