UPDATE from Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport:
Flight cancellations due to the storm that hit Atlanta continued into Saturday at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, where some passengers have been waiting since Friday for flights out.
More travelers who arrived at the airport Saturday morning for departures learned their flights had been cancelled or delayed until later in the day.
Traveler Brandon Lopez said Saturday morning while waiting at the Atlanta airport: “They just keep moving the time” of his flight’s departure. He said it won’t cause much inconvenience for him to take a later flight, but added, “I’m afraid they’re going to delay, delay, delay again.”
Delta Air Lines said Saturday is it has cancelled about 175 flights, most of them at its Atlanta hub, where it said an inch of ice accumulated at the airport.
“A thick layer of ice will slow the airline’s startup Saturday morning,” according to Delta. “Customers can expect potential de-icing delays throughout the day at airports in the Southeast following a snowstorm that brought freezing rain” to Hartsfield-Jackson.
Between all airlines, a total of 321 flights are cancelled for Saturday, according to Hartsfield-Jackson. That comes after 424 flights were cancelled Friday. The airport ordinarily handles as many as 2,500 flights a day.
While flights continue to take off and land, Atlanta-based Delta is also thinning its flight schedule to allow more time to de-ice each airplane before takeoff.
Southwest Airlines, the second-largest carrier in Atlanta behind Delta, said earlier it was cancelling its Saturday morning flights in Atlanta through 1 p.m. Southwest plans to resume its Atlanta flights this afternoon, but said travelers scheduled to fly over the next few days should check their flight status.
Delta is waiving certain change fees for travelers who were scheduled to fly Friday or Saturday and want to change their flight schedules.
Southwest said travelers can rebook their flights or travel standby without paying any additional charge, with certain limitations.
Delta said due to the storm and cancellations, it is also not allowing unaccompanied minors to connect through Atlanta Saturday, or for pets as checked baggage to connect through Atlanta. They can still travel if their flight begins or ends in Atlanta.