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Wind cancels small plane flights at Billings Logan

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Posted at 11:47 PM, Oct 17, 2023
and last updated 2023-10-18 01:47:11-04

The weather is changing as heavy winds moved in some cooler temperatures on Tuesday.

Winds, reaching nearly 60 miles per hour in Billings and 70 miles per hour in other parts of the state, knocked down several trees and power lines across the area.

They also wreaked some havoc on air travel and outdoor activities this afternoon.

No games and no practices were canceled.

At Billings Logan International Airport, the big planes did fairly well, but some of the smaller planes had some cancellations and diversions.

Several Cape Air Essential Air Service flights had to be canceled on Tuesday, and the flight from Sidney to Billings took a detour and landed in Miles City.

"When they tell you to put your seatbelt on because there could be a little turbulence, if I hadn't had my seatbelt on on that flight, I would not have stayed in my seat," said Steve Thuesen. "It was the roughest flight I've ever had."

Thuesen was among five passengers who landed in Miles City and came back to Billings on a shuttle.

Cape Air had to cancel many of its flights on its nine passenger airplanes.

"We did have to cancel, unfortunately, due to the winds here 40 gusting 45 knots, which is over the legal limit for our planes," said Jordan Keith, Cape Air station supervisor. "And we had one diversion to Miles City for safety issues, just to make sure."

And over at Amend Park, AA high school playoff soccer went on as scheduled, with the Senior girls defeating Great Falls, 1-0, in first round.

"Playing against the wind, it adds another whole element to the game," said Steph Wagner, Senior girls soccer coach. "And when you don't have the wind, you have to play smart and you got to keep the ball on the ground. We did a pretty good job doing that in the first half and I was happy to get out of the first half with with zeros. Then we finally put one away late in the second half and we held on to the win."

Amend Park was the venue for two first round playoff games.

In AA boys playoff soccer, West defeated Great falls, 4-1, in an earlier game.

In another girls game, West defeated Skyview, 2-0, in the night game.

"We never really shut down over the wind," said Mark Sulser, director of athletics and activities for School District 2.

Sulser said it takes some pretty severe weather to cancel games.

And he says other high school athletes were able to practice

"They just go out and do their thing if they're an outside sport," Sulser said. "We have cross country and football left that are still practicing, besides soccer, and they're outside. Then of course, volleyball is inside, so it won't affect them."

"A win is a win and it's good," Wagner said. "So obviously we're excited. We're excited to continue on."