As people begin their drives across the countries others, are catching planes. But how does winter weather affect our time in the air?
While it may seem scary, dangers from cold temperatures and precipitation aren’t as big of an issue for airline pilots as much as they used to be. One of those hazards from colder weather is icing.
“Icing is basically freezing rain or any kind of ice that accumulates on the aircraft. So you’ll get into structural icing that will start adhere to the airplane and it changes the surface of the airplane so it affects the air flow,” says Joshua Crooker, Alpha Air Center General Manager.
However, modern aircraft have ways to stop icing before it causes any problems.
The big planes like the airliners. They’ve got heated wings, so the wings on the leading edges where you’re going to typically accumulate the ice bleed air from the engines so it melts it, so nothing can adhere to the airplane,” says Joshua Crooker.
This is just a portion of what airlines do to ensure customers have a smooth voyage.
“The airlines will make a very safe safe decision to make sure the passengers are taken care of. The biggest thing out there is just to allow some extra time. Maybe delays with de-icing the aircraft, flows getting in and out of busy airports, if there is weather. But overall I say the airlines will make the decision to make sure the passengers are safe,” says Joshua Crooker.
And that goal of keeping flights safe has eased any fear of flying in winter like weather.
“No, it doesn’t bother me. I mean it would if it was landing on ice or something,” says Donna Hendricks, one of the many people choosing to fly this time of year.
“Not really. I went to the Philippines earlier this year and that was pretty shaky, so I’m sure it won’t be that bad. I’m not too concerned about it,” says Louis Zamaniego.