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North Bay wildfire smoke continues to impact SFO flights


Smoke from the North Bay fires continues to spread south, causing all sorts of problems, including delays from San Francisco International Airport.

The smoke is causing delays for about one in every four flights operating at SFO. Those delays are averaging about 75 to 90 minutes, which is tolerable for most passengers.

But if you look at the arrivals and departures board, there’s lots of canceled flights — 103 so far on Thursday. That could match the 115 flights canceled on Wednesday due to the smoke and reduced visibility.

The visibility has been about 7 miles all day long. That sets into motion a kind of metering system, similar to freeway on-ramps, to control how many flights can take off or land at a time.

Normally, SFO can handle 60 flights per hour, but that number was cut in half on Thursday.

A few flights were delayed as much as 2.5 to 5 hours, but that was rare. Still, passengers took it in stride — safety comes first.

“When they come in for landing,…

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