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Shelters nearing capacity and holiday travel delayed as freezing temperatures grip North Texas

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Pastor Wayne Walker leads the nonprofit Our Calling, which provides temporary shelter and services for the city’s most vulnerable residents.

“We've got individuals that are elderly, that are disabled; we've got individuals that are fleeing domestic violence,” Walker said. “Every day we work with victims of trafficking and you know, those challenges get so much worse in days like this, where it's cold.”

Walker said so far the nonprofit’s inclement weather shelter accommodates up to 360 people and was nearing capacity as of Thursday afternoon. More shelters are opening up throughout the city.

In Fort Worth, the city is using libraries and community centers as warming stations. The city is also working with the Presbyterian Night Shelter to provide warming spaces for residents in need. The shelter said it expects to be at full capacity on Thursday.

Meanwhile, the cold weather is impacting travel plans both locally and across the country.

As of Thursday afternoon, at least 99 flight cancellations have been reported at DFW Airport with several hundred delays. There are another 54 reported cancellations at Love Field Airport with at least 100 delays, according to the latest data from FlightAware.

Lauren Rounds, a spokesperson for Love Field, says these numbers aren’t unusual for an inclement weather day, but crews are making the necessary preparations for the cold.

“We don't have any master major cancellations and delays,” Rounds said. “There's just a few scattered across our flight status boards, most presumably from areas of the country where the weather is more severe or where or where they don't want their aircraft to get stuck.”

Rounds said the airport encourages passengers to pack for the worst weather ahead of traveling and to arrive early for flights ahead of the high volume of traffic at terminals.

In a statement, officials at DFW Airport said they’ve made the necessary preparations for the ongoing subfreezing temperatures.

Ahead of the holiday weekend, the airport is expecting an average of 200,000 passengers per day.

The statement also said that the airport’s transport shuttles will be taking extra time at each stop so customers can wait indoors.

Got a tip? Email Pablo Arauz Peña at parauzpena@kera.org

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Pablo Arauz Peña