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New year brings more canceled flights for air travelers

Posted at 7:43 PM, Jan 01, 2022

(AP) — The new year is bringing more of the same old misery that air travelers in the United States have been enduring for more than a week.

Airlines are blaming wintry weather and high numbers of sickouts due to the rising number of COVID-19 infections around the country.

According to tracking service FlightAware, more than 2,600 U.S. flights and nearly 4,600 worldwide had been canceled by late Saturday afternoon. That's the highest single-day toll yet since just before Christmas, when airlines began blaming staffing shortages on increasing COVID-19 infections among crews.

But weather, not the virus, was the culprit in Chicago, where Southwest Airlines suspended flights because of the grim forecast.