Washington. Airlines canceled more than 4,400 flights in the United States, disrupting holiday trips for thousands, due to winter storms Elliot, Which plagues the country and is causing fuel prices to rise to record levels.
The extreme weather coincides with the start of a Christmas travel season that was expected to be one of the busiest at pre-Covid pandemic levels.
More than 2,350 flights were canceled on Thursday and 2,120 scheduled for Friday, according to flight-tracking website FlightAware, while passenger rail Amtrak grounded dozens of trains through Christmas.
The Federal Aviation Administration said the winter storm was bringing blizzards to the Midwest and expected major disturbances in Chicago, Detroit and Minneapolis-St.
Frost drives up energy prices
Electricity and natural gas prices in the United States hit 20-year highs as extreme cold and snow cover covered much of the country, frozen oil and gas wells, reduced pipeline shipments and Gas flow has been limited in California.
The frost has frozen wells in Texas, Oklahoma, North Dakota, Pennsylvania and elsewhere.
In the past three days, gas production fell by nearly 4.7 billion cubic feet per day (bcfd) to a seven-month low of 94.3 bcfd.
This is the biggest daily drop in production since the frost in February 2021, when the winter storm hit Uri This cut off Texas’ gas supply and forced the state’s power grid operator to impose rolling power outages.
In northern California, gas prices reached $56 per million British thermal unit, surpassing an all-time high of $53 recorded in December 2000, according to Refinitiv data.