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Stranded in Halifax

Pearson's ground stop affects travelers across the country

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Digital writers

Tuesday, January 7, 2014, 12:21 PM -

Dangerously cold temperatures forced a 'ground stop' at Toronto's Pearson airport early Tuesday, creating a ripple effect of travel frustrations to others across the country.

"The runways are clear here in Halifax, but there aren’t too many planes taking off or landing," said The Weather Network's Nathan Coleman Tuesday morning.

Cancelled and delayed flights pile up on the departure board, as stranded passengers are forced to wait out the severe weather in other parts of the country.

"I've been on the phone for about five hours trying to call the airline to get a new flight rebooked and I've already missed my transferring flight to LA," one frustrated passenger said.

The ground stop in Toronto was lifted before 11 am, but the backlog of flights could have travelers waiting longer, with many in Halifax being told they're delayed until at least Wednesday.

Halifax airport spokesman Peter Spurway said they have baby food, diapers, dog and cat food on hand if travelers need them.

And while warmer temperatures and recent rainfall helped clear the tarmac in Halifax, officials say they're keeping a close eye on the thermometer.

"As the temperature drops today, our airfield crews and mechanics who back them up will be keeping the air field as dry as possible and we may use a pre-treatment to help prevent the formation of ice on the runways," says Spurway.

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