Count Models to Represent the Impacts of Weather and Infrastructure on Flight Disruptions

  • Author(s) / Creator(s)
  • This paper explores the application of count models to represent the relationship between flight disruptions and weather. Throughout the world, flights are regularly disrupted by delays at airports and in the terminal airspace, and less frequently by diversions and cancelations. Many delay studies have been conducted for large American and European airports, in part due to the availability of high-quality data. However, such high-quality data is not as readily available for other airports throughout the world. In this study, excess-zero count models are built using a publicly available dataset for Iqaluit Airport (YFB) in Northern Canada, to determine the influence of different weather components on disruption counts. Visibility and crosswind speeds are shown to have the largest influence on flight disruptions. The models are also applied using Aviation System Performance Metrics (ASPM) flight data for Anchorage Airport (ANC) in Alaska; the data is systematically degraded to match completeness of the Iqaluit data to test the models. The results verify that an excess-zero model using incomplete data yields results similar to that of a count model with complete data, demonstrating that an excess-zero model can overcome data incompleteness to yield acceptable results. Although count models have been applied extensively in the transportation literature, the authors believe this to be the first application to flight disruptions, and the first quantitative model of operations at a northern Canadian airport. This paper demonstrates that challenges in data availability—the case for most airports throughout the world—can be addressed with novel statistical modeling applications, and thus, delay studies can be conducted for almost any airport.

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  • Type of Item
    Article (Draft / Submitted)
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  • License
    Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International
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  • Citation for previous publication
    • Ohi, S.J., Kim, A.M., 2020. Count Models to Represent the Impacts of Weather and Infrastructure on Flight Disruptions. Transp. Res. Rec. J. Transp. Res. Board 2674, 510–521.
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