Tampa International Airport will cease commercial flights at 5 p.m. Tuesday due to the impending arrival of Hurricane Ian, Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Monday evening.
The closure will enable the airport to secure aircraft, jet bridges and ground equipment. Visitors will not be permitted. The airport will reopen once it can safely assess damage, survey road conditions and bring in staff.
The airport is located in an evacuation zone but is considered critical infrastructure and can stay open as long as needed. The airport had been scheduled to host a job fair on Tuesday, but that has been canceled.
Tampa International saw outbound flight delays tick up throughout the day on Monday. By 9:30 p.m., more than 60 flights had been delayed, according to the flight tracker FlightAware.com, about a third of them on Southwest Airlines.
St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport also is closing Tuesday, with its last flight out scheduled to depart at 11:22 a.m. The airport terminal will close at 1 p.m. Tuesday and remain closed until Pinellas County lifts its Zone A evacuation order, which went into effect at 6 p.m. Monday.
Both airports recommend travelers monitor updates from their airlines for up-to-the-minute flight information.
Times staff writer Olivia George contributed to this story.
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