In the days following Christmas, severe weather is expected to hit the Northern Plains region of the United States.
Beginning Wednesday, Dec. 26, Winter Storm Eboni could bring near-blizzard conditions to parts of the Plains, including both Dakotas. Those in the area should expect blowing snow through Thursday. The National Weather Service has warned that residents in the Plains should “expect hazardous travel conditions Wednesday into early Friday, with heavy snow and strong winds making roads dangerous.”
In advance of the expected storms, several airlines are issuing waivers so travelers can avoid the bad weather — or, at the very least, extend their Christmas plans a few days.
On American Airlines, travelers scheduled to pass through North Dakota (Bismark and Fargo), South Dakota (Rapid City and Sioux Falls), Minnesota (Minneapolis-St Paul and Rochester) and La Crosse, Wisconsin can push their plans back through Dec. 30.
Delta passengers scheduled for flights on Dec. 26 and 27 through Aberdeen or Rapid City, South Dakota; Bismarck, Fargo, Grand Forks or Minot, North Dakota; and Bemidji, Brainerd, Duluth, Hibbing and International Falls, Minnesota can reschedule through Dec. 30.
Passengers flying United Airlines on Dec. 26 and 27 will be able to reschedule flights through Dec. 30. Airports affected are in North Dakota (Bismarck, Devils Lake, Dickinson, Fargo, Jamestown, Minot and Williston), South Dakota (Rapid City and Sioux Falls), Duluth, Minnesota and Hancock, Michigan.
The storm already left more than a foot of snow in the Sierras on Christmas Eve. Eboni is expected to move across the U.S. this week, possibly ending up in the northeast on Friday.