Arctic blast causes more problems for travelers at RSW

CREATED Jan. 8, 2014

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FORT MYERS, Fla. – First it was the wintery mix of snow and ice, now it’s the blast of subzero air creating hazardous travel conditions and a headache for travelers at RSW airport.

For the last six days the monitors at RSW have been plagued by two words that travelers hate: delayed and cancelled.

Somehow travelers seem to still be holding onto hope.

“I'm always worried about being delayed because I have a short layover, but today it looks promising,” said Betsy Rowbottom.

Rowbottom is headed to Los Angeles today – no problem there – but to get to LAX she has a layover in Chicago.

Since the recent blast of arctic air swept from the Midwest to the Northeast, the ‘windy city’ is now taking on a new nickname – ‘Chiberia’ because of the brutal cold.

Those conditions have caused black ice and slick runways, making it difficult for planes to take flight.

Penny Venus says she has no worries about delays or cancellations affecting her travel plans, “No, I think it’s going to go pretty smoothly.”

Optimism and confidence from Venus even though she’ll spend the next 12 hours bouncing around some of the nation’s cities experiencing the worst of the frigid temps.

“Cincinnati and then Minneapolis and then across Wisconsin,” said Venus, “which is the border town from where we live in Winona, Minnesota."

Even as travelers prepare to head into the so-called “cold zone” they’ve earned bragging rights amongst friends and family for spending time in sunny Southwest Florida.

“All of my Facebook and social media, seeing pictures of the weather reports and I'm saying it's 80 - or 75 here so getting a lot of jealous comments,” said Rowbottom.

For the latest travel conditions to see if your travel plans will be affected, head to and click on the big red 4.