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Over 2000 flights cancelled in US

New Delhi:  Hundreds of passengers were stranded at US airports following a flurry of flight delays and cancellations in the Midwest and South after a winter storm hit the country, CNN reported on Friday.

The report stated, citing data from flight tracking website, that over 2400 flights were delayed and more than 2000 have been cancelled due to the storm so far.

Almost 40 per cent of flights, of the 36 per cent inbound flights were cancelled at the O’Hare International Airport in Chicago and Chicago Midway International Airport cancelled about 60% of both outbound and inbound flights.

Meanwhile, other affected airports include Denver International and Milwaukee Mitchell International.

According to CNN, the cancellations due to the grounding of the 737 Max 9 planes are also contributing to these numbers. More than 200 United and Alaska Airlines flights have been cancelled each day this week due to the Federal Aviation Administration-mandated grounding. The FAA and Boeing are still trying to settle on an inspection protocol that would allow those planes to resume flying.

Most of the cancellations have been attributed to the winter storm. FlightAware showed that Southwest, which doesn’t fly the 737 Max 9, cancelling nearly 400 flights–the most of any airline.

Moreover, the situation has also affected the electricity supply in the region. Power outages are climbing as the storm unleashes severe thunderstorms in the South, blizzard conditions in the

Midwest and strong wind gusts for the more than 150 million Americans under wind alerts Friday.

Nearly 250,000 homes and businesses are without power in the Great Lakes and South as of Friday morning. Most of the outages are in Illinois, where more than 97,000 are in the dark, and winds have gusted as high as 55 mph at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport.

Severe thunderstorms racing across the South have produced wind gusts as high as 74 mph in Arkansas.

The severe winds of the storm led to significant damage to an iconic state landmark dating back to the 19th century in Maine during the powerful storm sweeping across the eastern half of the United States, CNN reported.

As per the Maine officials, only one wall of the Pemaquid Point Lighthouse Park bell house, built in 1897, is still standing after 79 mph winds struck it Wednesday, according to Bristol Parks and Recreation Department director Shelley Gallagher.

CNN reported that Gallagher said that with another powerful storm on the horizon — time is essential to ensure more harm isn’t done to the building and officials have taken steps to shore up what remains of the structure, but are “very concerned” it isn’t enough.

The bell house was built to store a 1,000-pound bell that alerted sailors when fog set in and they couldn’t see the lighthouse, according to Gallagher. he bell was not damaged in the storm — it was moved at the end of August because the beam on which it hung was rotting.
“The wall the bell was hanging on isn’t there anymore, and a part of history would have been lost,” Gallagher said.

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