Travel Alert: Waivers for Storms Hermine, Lester and Madeline

A lthough Hermine, Lester and Madeline may initially sound like a law firm, they are actually three tropical systems affecting portions of the United States — and airlines have posted information pertaining to travel waivers in case you need to postpone your travel plans over the next few days.

Tropical Storm Hermine

Tropical Storm Hermine 2016

Satellite image of Tropical Storm Hermine. Source: The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration of the Department of Commerce of the United States.

The center of this storm is approximately 250 miles west-southwest of Tampa; and landfall along a large portion of the coastline of Florida — which is better known as the Big Bend area due to its shape — on the Gulf of Mexico is expected either as a weak Category 1 hurricane or a strong tropical storm later tonight and through early tomorrow morning; and it is expected to track over northern Florida, southern Georgia and the coasts of South Carolina and North Carolina.

As a result, hurricane warnings and tropical storm warnings have been issued for that aforementioned gulf coast of Florida; while tropical storm watches have been issued on the eastern coast of the United States from northern Florida to northern South Carolina.

Strong winds, rough surf, coastal flooding and heavy rains are expected, with up to eight inches of rain to soak the most affected areas — although 12 inches of rain in localized spots is not out of the question. Isolated tornadoes are also possible.

Cities expected to be affected by Tropical Storm Hermine include Charlotte, Tampa, Jacksonville, Savannah, Daytona Beach, Myrtle Beach, Virginia Beach, Charleston, Wilmington and possibly even the southeastern portion of the greater Atlanta metropolitan area.

Although the storm will be expected to have considerably weakened by the time it reaches northeastern cities such as New York, Philadelphia and Boston, inclement weather as a result of this storm may still be strong enough to force travel and other plans to be altered.

The following airlines had issued travel alerts for this particular tropical storm:

Hurricane Lester

Hurricane Lester 2016

Satellite image of Hurricane Lester. Source: The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration of the Department of Commerce of the United States.

At fewer than 900 miles east of Hilo in Hawaii, Hurricane Lester is packing sustained winds of 120 miles per hour; with wind gusts of up to 150 miles per hour. It is expected to brush by the northern coasts of the Hawaiian Islands as a strong tropical storm or weak hurricane by Saturday morning, September 3, 2016.

Although no coastal watches or advisories are in effect at this time, the following airlines are nonetheless offering travel waivers — just in case:

Tropical Storm Madeline

Tropical Storm Madeline 2016

Satellite image of Tropical Storm Madeline. Source: The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration of the Department of Commerce of the United States.

Once a powerful Category 4 hurricane, rough surf and rip currents are the result of Tropical Storm Madeline, which will have tracked just south of the big island of Hawaii on its westbound path as it continues to weaken; but airlines are offering a travel waiver for today in case you need to change your travel plans.

The following airlines had issued travel alerts for this particular tropical storm for anyone scheduled to today, Thursday, September 1, 2016:

Flight Waivers, Delays and Cancellations

If you are traveling to any of the aforementioned areas, expect delays and cancellations. Keep up to date on the latest information pertaining to these tropical systems which may adversely affect your travel plans. Better yet, postponing or canceling your trip might be a better option — no matter which mode of travel you plan on taking.

If you are traveling to the affected areas on an airline not based in the United States — or even if you are traveling on any of the aforementioned airlines, for that matter — please keep yourself updated as to the latest information simply by clicking on the appropriate links in this article.

Summary

As each of the storms change in intensity, size and location, look for the travel waivers to possibly be altered by some of the airlines. Also, keep in mind that all of the airlines do not share the same travel waiver policies.

Most importantly of all: please travel safely.

Source: the National Hurricane Center of the National Weather Service of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration of the United States.

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