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Travellers beat weather woes to reach Bermuda

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Residents struggled to get back home from Christmas holidays as flights to Bermuda from the US east coast were delayed or cancelled.

Delta's flight 561 from Boston Logan was delayed by four hours and had to fight through storm force winds to land at LF Wade International Airport yesterday.

“It was a rough landing and I'm still feeling sick from it, but the pilot handled it well,” said Sierra Paynter, coming back from visiting her mother in hospital.

She said she was thankful she hadn't had much else to do in Boston.

“I was up there for four days. I didn't need to go anywhere, which was good. But there was a long wait in the airport. The flight was meant to go at 8am but it didn't leave until 12pm. The airport at Boston was full of people waiting on all kinds of flights.”

A Continental flight from Newark was cancelled and most incoming flights were delayed.

Flight 561 was nearly cancelled due to the fierce winds in Bermuda.

Amy DaPonte said: “They told us it was going to be windy coming in, and they got 12 people off the flight so they could put in extra fuel in case the plane had to turn back from Bermuda. We were told the only reason the plane was even able to land was because the wind was blowing straight down the runway. If it had been blowing across, the flight would have had to turn back.”

She said she had arrived in Boston on December 20, just in time for the snow, and counted herself lucky to have made the flight home.

“I couldn't do any shopping for myself; a lot of places weren't open and the roads were closed. There was a crazy amount of snow and the ice had the car shimmying all over the place. I'm just glad to be a little warm again.”

A visibly relieved Alexis Bierman said she had just spent two weeks in Topsfield, Massachusetts.

“The roads were horrible, really icy, and I probably nearly got killed a few times driving. They closed a lot of the shopping centres, so we had to make sure we got enough food, but we were lucky. A lot of my friends around there lost power and we didn't.”

After waiting four hours in a packed airport where many flights had been cancelled, Ms Bierman said she was glad to be home, even if her luggage didn't make it.

“It didn't look like we were going to land. But they lost my bag.”

Guest worker Mark Pomeroy shrugged at the delay in Logan Airport.

“We were visiting friends for Christmas. We had a friend trying to get to London who was waiting days.”

Jennifer and Terry Benevides were returning from 28 days in Colorado, where Mr Benevides had undergone surgery. They said they had originally booked to return through Philadelphia but managed to return through Atlanta, Georgia.

Mrs Benevides said: “We were very lucky that our travel agent was able to rebook us. Coming through there would have been very challenging. It was beautiful in Colorado but conditions on the east coast were very bad. And the pilot deserves great credit from us for that landing, because it was bumpy coming down into Bermuda.”

Welcome: Sierra Paynter receives a hug from her sister Destinee Swan at the L.F. Wade International Airport after weather conditions overseas delayed her flight from Boston.
Jennifer and Terry Benevides greet their dog Lexy at the L.F. Wade International Airport after returning home form Atlanta despite many long delays due to weather yesterday.

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Published December 29, 2010 at 1:00 am (Updated December 29, 2010 at 7:14 am)

Travellers beat weather woes to reach Bermuda

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