Xiaoqing Wu, Department of Geological and Atmospheric Sciences, Iowa State University; Peng Wei, Department of Aerospace Engineering, Iowa State University


In 2013 the Federal Aviation Administration found that over 28,000 flights were delayed out of the Chicago’s Midway and O’Hare International Airports and that 69% of flights are delayed by weather. This paper examines the accuracy of flight delays caused by low ceilings and visibilities from November 2015 to March 2016. Terminal Aerodrome Forecasts were used to determine the cause of delays while Automated Surface Observing System was used to determine the accuracy of each flight delay. It was found that low ceilings and visibilities caused 75% of the flights delayed by weather and that 13% of delays caused by low ceilings and visibilities were inaccurate. Over half of all inaccurate delays were caused by the Terminal Aerodrome Forecasts predicting precipitation to last longer than what was observed.

Copyright Owner

Kerry Blodgett