More Than 1,500 Flights Canceled as Icy Weather Grips Portions of U.S.

Over 1,500 flights within, entering or leaving the U.S. have been canceled Wednesday across the country as a new stretch of winter weather has begun to drive down temperatures.

Hundreds of the affected flights have been coming from the Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, according to flight tracking website FlightAware. Several airlines, including American Airlines and Southwest, have issued travel alerts warning customers of potential cancellations because of weather conditions and said some customers will be allowed to rebook their flights without change or cancellation fees.

A pair of storms that will produce conflicting high and low temperatures are set to clash across much of the central and eastern U.S. in the coming days, with several areas of the country already seeing significant amounts of snow and ice, according to AccuWeather. Several areas of Minnesota and Wisconsin have already reported receiving anywhere from 5 to 30 inches of snow that mostly came down Tuesday, and cities like New York City and Indianapolis, currently experiencing temperatures in the range of 50 to 60 degrees, are forecast to see those drop to between 20 and 30 degrees.

As much of the country experiences either rain or snow prior to dropping temperatures, ice is also likely to form across several regions through the rest of the week, according to an advisory from the National Weather Service.

Large stretches of Texas and Oklahoma are under winter storm warnings or winter weather advisories, while much of the Northeast through New York and the New England area is under a winter storm watch, according to the National Weather Service's warnings and advisories map.

Areas of Oklahoma reported widespread power outages Wednesday morning, and some schools were opting for remote learning because of the hazardous conditions, according to KWTV. Several car accidents were reported across Texas on Wednesday morning, as residents battled the winter weather, KXAS-TV in Fort Worth reported.

About half an inch of ice is expected to develop through Friday in the Ozarks and other parts of Missouri, which the NWS Weather Prediction Center tweeted could cause "scattered power outages, tree damage and dangerous travel."

The stretch of the winter storm expected to hit New England on Friday could reach rates of 1 inch of snow falling per hour at points during the day, making dangerous travel likely, the WPC said.

Much of the central and western U.S. is experiencing below average temperatures, while nearly the entire East Coast is experiencing above average temperatures, according to CNN.

However, the forecasted drops in temperatures across the East Coast later this week make increased snow and ice likely.

"When warm, humid air and cold air try to occupy the same real estate, ice storms happen. The frigid Arctic air is significantly heavier than the buoyant warm air coming up from the south. That warm air rides over the cold air like packages going up a conveyor belt. The clouds make rain, but it freezes as it falls or hits the below-freezing ground," CNN meteorologist Chad Myers said.

Update 2/23/22, 4:18 p.m. EST: This story has been updated with additional context and information.

Flights Canceled Winter Weather Storm Cold Ice
Over 1,500 flights have been canceled across the U.S. Wednesday as a new winter storm drops temperatures and is leaving ice and snow in several regions of the country. Above, a flight departures board shows all flights canceled during a snow event at Newark International Airport in Newark, New Jersey, on March 21, 2018. Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images