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LAX Passengers Face Post-Holiday Travel Rush, Massive Northeast Storm

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(credit: Frederic J. Brown/AFP/Getty Images)

(credit: Frederic J. Brown/AFP/Getty Images)

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textalerts180 LAX Passengers Face Post Holiday Travel Rush, Massive Northeast Storm

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — The holiday season is winding down, but Thursday was still expected to be one of the busiest travel days at Southland airports.

An estimated 200,000 passengers passed through LAX, where streets leading up to the airport saw some heavy traffic throughout the day, according to officials.

Mary Grady, a spokesperson for Los Angeles World Airports, told KNX 1070 NEWSRADIO if passengers can’t get through the upper departure level, they should try the lower level for drop-offs.

“Use the arrival level, that’s actually moving just fine,” Grady said. “You can drop folks off, they can take an elevator or an escalator up to the departure level…that’s one of those secrets here at LAX.”

Grady also recommended travelers check their flight status before leaving for the airport as a fierce winter storm bearing down on the Northeast has caused delays and cancellations nationwide.

In total, 41 departing and arriving flights were cancelled at LAX between 6 a.m. to midnight, which impacted an estimated 5,535 passengers.

Arianna Khaira and her boyfriend, Leeland Miller, were excited about a trip to Turks and Caicos until they found out their connecting flight in Washington, D.C., was canceled.

“We’ve been planning this vacation for about a year in a half now,” Miller said. “So…to run into this road block.”

“It’s very frustrating, we’re trying to keep a positive mind, but deep down we’re both really mad because we just want to get there. It’s late, we’re tired,” Khaira said.

The storm system also grounded hundreds of flights in New York, Boston, Chicago and Philadelphia.

Simon Dereje of Los Angeles was stuck in Chicago.

“My first flight to Chicago was canceled and now my next flight is delayed. I don’t know when I’m going to be back. I gotta go back to L.A.,” he said.

Up to 14 inches of snow is forecast for the Boston area and the National Weather Service issued a blizzard warning for Long Island — where 8 to 10 inches of snow could fall and winds could gust up to 45 mph — from Thursday evening into Friday afternoon, according to the Associated Press.

(TM and © Copyright 2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2014 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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