U.S. Storms Hit Regionals Hard

 - December 4, 2012, 3:55 AM

Hurricane Sandy and the subsequent storm that struck the east coast of the U.S. last month forced the world’s largest regional airline company to cancel some 3,100 flights. St. George, Utah-based SkyWest, whose ExpressJet subsidiary flies a network concentrated largely in the eastern half of the U.S., estimates it will lose some $3 million as a result of Sandy and the following week’s Nor’easter.

Although the storms left a significant dent in SkyWest’s profit-and-loss statements, they could prove crippling for the likes of little CommutAir, for example, which had to cancel 374 of its 799 flights scheduled between October 28 and November 1, according to data compiled by Portland, Ore.-based FlightStats. Other regionals whose East Coast operations saw considerable disruption included Chautauqua Airlines, which canceled 646 out of 2,157 flights during the same period; and American Eagle, which scrapped 637 out of 7,335, according to FlightStats.