South Florida

Flying this weekend? Expect some delays

Heavy rain and lightning result in delayed flights to and from South Florida airports.
Heavy rain and lightning result in delayed flights to and from South Florida airports. El Nuevo Herald

Many hoping to take off from Miami International Airport are going to have to wait: Scattered thunderstorms are delaying several flights to and from the city.

Out of the airport’s daily average of 950 flights, nearly 50 were delayed as of 7:30 p.m. this evening to and from cities throughout the country. Twenty-nine were arriving flights and 20 were departing flights, said Suzy Trutie, the Miami-Dade Aviation Department public relations officer.

“It really has to do with our weather conditions,” Trutie said, referring to South Florida’s lightning and rain.

These kinds of delays aren’t uncommon for this time of year, Trutie said, and the National Weather Service said the nasty weather had little to do with Hurricane Matthew. The storm, a Category 4 as of Friday afternoon, currently poses a danger to Jamaica, parts of Hispaniola, eastern Cuba and — by early next week — the Bahamas. Its potential threat to Florida remains unclear.

“We’re basically starting to see the end of the summer,” said Robert Garcia, National Weather Service meteorologist in Miami. “As seasons try to change, we see these kinds of rains.”

Flight data tracking company FlightAware reported average departure delay times to be about an hour and a half in Miami on Friday night. Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport had average delay times of about 40 minutes.

Wet weather conditions are expected to be much of the same for the rest of the weekend. Residents can expect thunderstorms Saturday and Sunday evening, the weather service reported.