The Super Bowl is always a big event for general aviation operations, but with the game scheduled for Feb. 2 at MetLife Stadium in New Jersey, could potential snow storms be a major issue? The FAA expects an additional 1,200 flights to the New York/New Jersey metro airports for Super Bowl XLVIII. It seems FAA is already preparing the FBOs for the large amounts of visitors expected. A TFR already has been designated,
with three restricted zones extending up to 30 nm from the field, which sits not far from both Newark and Teterboro airports. Air traffic controllers will separate Super Bowl traffic from normal traffic and assign departure slots for flights operating at GA airports. Extra staff and expanded hours of operation will be added.
What is one thing that pilots won’t need to worry about during the winter weather? Sharing airspace with blimps. Blimps are not equipped to cope with winter weather like snow and sleet. Even MetLife, which operates two blimps in the U.S., said the aircraft will be deployed in southern states during February.
MetLife stadium is also preparing for any weather that might interrupt the big game. Officials say they are ready to handle any challenges they may have to face. A few weeks ago Super Bowl officials demonstrated a snow machine that can melt 600 tons of snow every hour. The New Jersey Department of Transportation says it is stocked with 60,000 tons of salt.
They have the trucks, the manpower and all essential supplies to fight any major storm event. I have a feeling a little snow storm won’t be enough to keep away the diehard fans!