NYC, airports prepare for weekend winter storm

December 18, 2009 8:23:17 PM PST
New York City officals are planning on as much as a foot of snow this weekend.Officials currently expect four to 10 inches of snow accumulation, which is expected to start after noon Saturday and lasts until daytime Sunday.

Temperatures will be in the 20s with wind gusts, so this will be a difficult storm to clear. Saturday night will be a difficult travel time, and motorists should stay off the roads by Saturday afternoon.

Alternate Side Street cleaning will be in effect Saturday, and officials are hopeful to collect garbage and recycling.

The Transit Authority has canceled weekend subway work, meaning there should be no service changes. However, station closures, like those in the Rockaways or in Brooklyn, where stations are being rehabilitated or track closures to support that, will remain in effect.

The Port Authority has also canceled weekend PATH work

Sanitation Department workers will be on the job for 12-hour shifts. More than 2,000 workers are scheduled for each shift, and all weekend days off have been canceled.

The city will have 350 salt spreaders, 2,000 snow plows and 250,000 tons of rock salt. There are 6,200 miles of roadways in the city.

The LIRR, Metro North and NJ Transit are all prepping for the storm. They plan their regular weekend service.

Airports are also prepping for the storm. There will be delays and cancellations once the snow starts.

Most airlines have waived fees for passengers who want to reschedule flights out of JFK, LaGuardia and Newark scheduled December 18-20. Many flights to Washington, D.C. have already been cancelled.

All airlines stress that passengers should check on their flights status on the day of travel. CLICK HERE for the flight tracker.

Airline options are as follows:


-- Continental is providing the option to re-schedule or re-route your travel once, without penalty, for travel scheduled Dec 18-20 out of all three local airports. If your flight has been canceled, a refund to the original form of payment can be requested. If you are traveling using a OnePass Reward, redeposit fees will be waived. Travel must be completed by the original validity dates specified on the ticket and changes must be confirmed in the same class of service as the original ticket. The value of the ticket may also be used towards purchasing another Continental Airlines ticket.

-- Continental will start cancelling some flights beginning at 2pm Saturday. They are trying to anticipate the affect the storm is going to have on operations and will adjust accordingly


-- If your flight is canceled, you are entitled to a refund. Even if your flight is not canceled, you may make a one-time change to your ticket without fee if you are scheduled to travel to, from, or through the following cities on Delta, Delta Connection, or Delta-coded flights during specified time periods.

-- Delta will run operations in and out of NYC through early Saturday, then start canceling flights. The goal at JFK is to keep all the international flights up and running.


-- Due to weather on the East Coast, American Airlines offers customers the convenience to change their plans. Customers ticketed to travel on AA to, from or through our three area airports may change flights as shown without penalty if scheduled to fly Dec 18-20.

-- AA alreadys has plans to cancel Saturday morning flights out of the DC area. No changes in our area yet. They only operate a couple of flights daily from JFK to DC.


US Airways has relaxed ticketing policies for travel out of our three airports which may be affected by bad weather. US Airways will waive the standard change fee, advance reservation and ticketing requirements for customers with travel to, from or through the cities listed above on the dates above. See our revised ticketing policy below for rules and restrictions. Call 800-428-4322 for more information. If US Airways service continues to operate to the affected destinations, you can make certain changes without incurring the standard change fee, advance reservation or ticketing requirements:

-- You can move your entire itinerary up to seven days before or after the scheduled origination date.

-- You can apply the full value of your wholly unused tickets toward the purchase of a ticket to an alternate destination, although travel must originate within seven days of the scheduled origination date.


Travel waivers have been issued for travel in and out of all three airports from Dec 18-20 due to snow.

JET BLUE has cancelled flights Friday and Saturday out of JFK to Dulles, Richmond, Charlotte and Raleigh-Durham. No other changes.