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More than 800 flights at DIA canceled as winter storm slams Colorado

Update 9:11 a.m. Friday: This story will no longer be updated. Click here to see the latest update on Friday delays/cancellations at Denver International Airport

Update 8:30 p.m.: There were 830 canceled flights and 427 delayed flights at Denver International Airport as of late Thursday, according to the flight tracking website FlightAware.

All airport operations were normal, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

Update 2:00 p.m.: Snow is finally falling at Denver International Airport, though operations remain normal and all runways are open, according to airport officials.

“What we’re seeing right now is there are bands of snow, but our crews are ready to plow the roads, de-ice the planes and clear the runways,” spokesperson Ashley Forest said.

Just over 1 inch of snow had fallen at the airport as of noon, according to the National Weather Service.

There were 814 flight cancellations and 190 delays reported as of 2 p.m., according to the flight tracking website FlightAware.

DIA could see 4 inches to 8 inches of snow accumulation through Friday morning, falling short of the 11 inches forecasters initially expected.

Current NWS forecasts show temperatures hovering near freezing through the day with wind gusts up to 28 mph and up to 3 inches of snow.

Temperatures could drop to 25 degrees overnight, with wind gusts up to 24 mph and up to 5 inches of snow, according to the agency.

Original reporting: As a major winter storm hit Colorado, more than 800 flights at Denver International Airport were canceled by 8:30 a.m. Thursday, according to airline tracking site FlightAware.

The storm, which forecasters at the National Weather Service in Boulder expected to last until Friday morning, could drop up to 18 inches in the Denver area. Snowfall rates will likely worsen throughout the day Thursday.

At DIA, 808 flights have been canceled, almost evenly spread between arrivals and departures. There are also 132 delayed flights.

Nearly all of these flights were canceled by the airlines preemptively Wednesday evening, said Stephanie Figueroa, an airport spokesperson.

The airport is in good shape Thursday, she said. All six runways are in operation, with flights still taking off and landing as normal.

“It’s really peaceful at the airport,” Figueroa said.

Some 40% of the cancelations (316) are through Southwest Airlines. That accounts for 51% of their Denver traffic.

Regional airline SkyWest has canceled 199 flights, or 75% of their Denver traffic.

Frontier Airlines has canceled 91% of their Denver flights with 124 cancellations. United Airlines has canceled 78 flights, accounting for 12% of their Denver traffic.

Other airlines with significant cancellations include CommuteAir and Mesa Airlines, with 30 and 29 canceled flights, and Volaris and AeroMéxico have canceled all of their Denver flights.

American Airlines, Air Canada, Lufthansa, Alaska Airlines and British Airways all have several canceled flights as well.

Southwest and United airlines issued travel warnings ahead of the storm and are allowing some customers to rebook their flights.

United customers who purchased their tickets on or before Sunday and are set to travel Wednesday, Thursday or Friday can reschedule their trip through March 19 with no fee or fare difference.

Southwest customers can rebook or travel standby within two weeks of their original travel date without additional charges, according to the alert.

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