Charlotte airport said its staff on Wednesday checked emergency equipment and supplies like backup power and storm drains.
Airlines generally offer waivers and cancel flights ahead of time so travelers are not stranded at the airport and crews are not out of place when operations resume. They will also routinely keep aircraft away from affected airports.
Constant high wind of at least 41 mph can prevent Federal Aviation Administration staff from servicing radar and radio towers, so some systems could be shut down pre-emptively, the agency said.
Flight disruptions could continue after the storm has passed. The FAA said it could restrict air traffic, including passenger flights, to clear airspace for emergency flights.
Other companies with employees in evacuation zones were also preparing for the storm. Boeing, for example, said it flew some of its 787 wide-body jets from its factory in Charleston on Tuesday to Seattle to keep them out of the storm’s path. It also suspended operations in Charleston as staff were evacuated ahead of the the hurricane.
Delta is monitoring the weakening storm closely because the National Hurricane Center expects it to move west, which could bring high wind and rain to its home in Atlanta, the world’s busiest airport. Cancellations of just over 1,000 are small compared with the more than 20,000 flights that were called off during three devastating hurricanes last year — Harvey, Irma and Maria, which hit major airlines in their hubs.
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