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Floyd Grounds Thousands of Travelers

September 16, 1999

NEW YORK (AP) _ Hurricane Floyd’s express ride up the East Coast grounded tens of thousands of airline passengers around the country Thursday.

Airlines resumed service to and from Florida, Georgia and parts of the Carolinas, but canceled several hundred flights into and out of airports from Boston to Washington as the storm raced toward the Northeast with gusty winds and rain of up to a foot.

Vera O’Pry of Charlotte, N.C., could not fly from Philadelphia to St. Croix in the Virgin Islands.

``I’m just going to have to try to find something fun to do in Philadelphia,″ she said. ``You make your fun where you find it.″

Carol Richards of Willingboro, N.J., missed a women’s ministry conference in Atlanta. ``I’ve been planning this trip since April. It’s really inconveniencing to me,″ she said, ``but I’ll have to deal with it.″

Flights into and out of Boston, Hartford, Conn., New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington were canceled. Some passengers trying to make connnections were rebooked through other cities.

Amtrak passenger service was suspended south of Washington. The railroad said its heavily used Northeast Corridor service between Boston and Washington was operating normally, though extra crews and diesel locomotives were stationed along the route in case electric power went out. Ticket sales were brisk as grounded airline passengers decided to take the train.

Doug Karas was stranded in Washington, unable to fly home to Texas after attending a convention.

``When I looked out this morning, I thought, well, I can fly in this, but I guess the airline is looking out for my safety,″ he said.

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