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Northeast: 3,000 flights canceled as large winter storm approaches

February 08, 2013|By Mary Forgione | Los Angeles Times Daily Travel & Deal blogger
  • Snow from a winter storm began falling in Boston on Friday. The city is expecting 2 to 3 feet of snow.
Snow from a winter storm began falling in Boston on Friday. The city is expecting… (Kelvin Ma / Bloomberg )

More than 3,000 flights have been canceled and train service has been suspended Friday as a large winter storm started to bear down on a swath of the Northeast from New Jersey to Maine. The winter storm is predicted to bring high winds, plenty of snow -- 2 to 3 feet predicted for Boston and New York City -- and a big headache for travelers.

"This one doesn't come along every day. This is going to be a dangerous winter storm," Alan Dunham, meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Taunton, Mass., told the Weather Channel. "Wherever you need to get to, get there by Friday afternoon and don't plan on leaving."

As a result, officials in many states are taking precautions to prepare for what could be a devastating blizzard. reports 3,147 flights canceled Friday and 980 flights canceled for Saturday, as of noon Eastern time. Airports in New York City (LaGuardia and JFK), Newark, Boston, Hartford, Chicago, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Washington, D.C., reported cancellations. (Check out the flight delay map for up-to-date information.)

Passengers planning to fly to the East Coast on Friday or Saturday should contact their airline before going to the airport to check on the status of their flight.

Because of the storm, Amtrak is halting train service Friday afternoon between New York City and Boston and on routes that service Springfield, Mass.; Hartford; Brunswick, Maine; and other locations.

Boston is shutting down subways, buses and other mass transit as of 3:30 p.m. Eastern time and the Massachusetts governor has declared a statewide driving ban that's slated to begin at 4 p.m. Eastern time.

Airlines are allowing passengers heading East to change their travel dates or postpone travel without penalties. Here are fee waivers currently in effect for these carriers:

AirTran Airways
American Airlines
Delta Air Lines
Southwest Airlines
United Airlines
US Airways
Virgin America
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