Oct 29, 2012 7:34 PM by Nathan O'Neal
TUCSON - As Hurricane Sandy has rocked the east coast, it has also forced some flying through Tucson International Airport to rethink their travel plans.
While TIA has not been directly impacted by the extreme weather, officials with the airport are encouraging those who are choosing to travel to double check on any connecting flights --because that's where things could get messy.
It has been a mostly quiet storm at Tucson International but for traveler James Bateman, he didn't want to take the chance of getting caught up in the mess that Hurricane Sandy has brought all along the eastern seaboard.
"I just thought if I could get out today, I might beat it a little bit," Bateman told News 4 Tucson after rescheduling his flight home to Indiana.
"I thought there'd be a lot of people changing flights but there wasn't," Bateman said.
Many folks passing through the airports said they were glad to take advantage of a perfectly sunny day, free of the kind of weather that has plagued many east coast travelers.
"I am glad to be here in Arizona," said Steven Labarbra, who had planned to return to his home in New York but decided to wait out the storm here in the desert.
"I'm here to see what arrangements I can make in a later date in flying," Labarbra told News 4 Tucson.
Labarbra said he's happy to extend his stay in Tucson but can't help but worry for his family and friends back east.
"I just hope everybody stays safe in New York and all along the east coast...God Bless...hope everythings works out...that they all stay safe," Labarbra said. "Safe and dry."
Despite all the excitement about Hurrican Sandy, travelers like James Bateman say they are ready to get home.
"It's been great but I've got to get home and take care of those grandkids," Bateman said.
No direct flights out of TIA have been cancelled. However, both Southwest and U.S. Airways have issued travel advisories and additional cancellations. Those advisories are expected to last at least through Halloween.