Extreme weather caused JetBlue to cancel half of its flights on Thursday with cancellations continuing as the airline recovers


Jetblue Airbus A320
  • JetBlue left hundreds of passengers stranded after delaying or canceling half of its flights on Thursday.
  • The airline said severe weather in Florida and New England caused the flight disruptions.
  • Weather was a primary factor in delays that occurred over the summer, causing issues for American and Spirit.
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JetBlue Airways canceled or delayed over half of its flights yesterday, leaving passengers at some airports stranded for hours.

On Thursday, JetBlue passengers complained on Twitter about hours-long flight delays and subsequent cancellations, with some saying they were stranded for up to 25 hours.

“The bulk of cancellations … were the result of dangerous thunderstorms in South Florida and the Northeast last night and into this morning. This weather leads to airport closures and air traffic control programs. Whenever these weather events take place they can also create residual impacts as we work to reposition aircraft and crews,” a JetBlue spokesperson told Insider.

According to data from FlightAware, 50% of JetBlue flights were disrupted yesterday, with 44% being delayed and 6% being canceled. The airline had the highest ratio of flight disruptions compared to other carriers, including Southwest and American which only had 20% of flights delayed and 1% and 2% canceled, respectively.

Meanwhile, Delta Air Lines, which, according to the airline, has the largest operation at New York’s JFK International Airport, only had 17% of its flights delayed and 0% canceled on Thursday. Today, JetBlue has already delayed 27% and canceled 6% of its flights, compared to Delta, American, United, and Southwest that have all delayed less than 10% and canceled between 0 and 1%.

Weather was the principal factor in the hundreds of flight cancellations incurred by airlines over the summer. In June, American was forced to slash 80 flights a day after extreme weather disrupted the operation. The airline also cut 1% of its schedule for July to help manage the travel boom as it battled weather and labor shortages.

Meanwhile, Spirit Airlines’ operation broke down after a poorly timed combination of severe weather and staffing issues, forcing it to cancel 2,000 flights as it fought to get its schedule back on track. Its slow recovery got the attention of the US Department of Transportation, which contacted the airline to “remind” them of passenger rights when their flights are canceled, reported The Points Guy. Spirit was still canceling half of its flights into its fifth day of disruptions, while JetBlue has only canceled 8% on its second day, according to FlightAware.