High Winds Delay New York-Bound Flights

High winds that delayed flights to LaGuardia Airport by more than an hour will persist in New York City today.

Wind gusts as intense as 50 miles (80 kilometers) per hour are possible throughout the day as a cold front approaches and then crosses the city, said Joey Picca, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Upton, New York.

“Especially as we get later in the day and the cold front passes through, we will see those winds go back up,” Picca said by telephone. “In the next few hours, by mid- to late morning, it should be pushing through the city.”

The front touched off tornadoes yesterday that killed at least one man and injured 22 others in Georgia, and downed trees, damaged buildings and knocked out power from Alabama to Pennsylvania, according to the U.S. Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Oklahoma.

A high wind warning has been posted for much of New York, as well as the six-state New England region, according to the weather service. Temperatures are expected to fall throughout the day in the Northeast.

There probably won’t be a repeat of severe weather today, according to the storm center.

The system also contributed to the cancellation of 869 flights around the U.S. yesterday, according to FlightAware, a Houston-based airline tracking company. Airports in Philadelphia, New York and Chicago had the most problems.

Flight Delays

Today’s winds have caused delays of 1 hour and 9 minutes for flights arriving at LaGuardia as of 9:30 a.m., down from 3 hours and 19 minutes earlier, according to the Federal Aviation Administration website. In addition, 257 U.S. flights have been canceled, with LaGuardia and Newark’s Liberty International Airport topping the list.

The system’s high winds have also caused power outages to more than 336,000 homes and businesses from South Carolina to Maine as of about 9:15 a.m., according to data compiled by Bloomberg from electric utility websites and spokesmen.

Connecticut, with 81,341 customers, about 5 percent, appeared worst hit, according to utilities Connecticut Light & Power and United Illuminating.

Temperatures will fall along the East Coast as the front passes, Picca said. It was 54 degrees Fahrenheit (12 Celsius) in Central Park earlier today and tomorrow’s high should be 34.

Boston’s high was 58 today and lows will reach 26 tonight. Philadelphia’s temperature peaked at 50 earlier today and is expected to reach 29 tonight.

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