Today and tomorrow, travelers in the Mid-Atlantic, Northeast, and New England should expect disruption as a low-pressure system moves through the area. Winter Storm Watches have been posted from far northeast Pennsylvania into central and upstate New York and parts of Vermont due to the possibility of hazardous conditions.
Rain along the I-95 corridor could cause commuting delays from Washington DC to the New York City tri-state area. The possibility of wet snow will be confined to higher-terrain areas in upstate New York and northern New England. Low-end coastal flooding could also develop on the southern New England coast today.
Today, travelers in Midwestern states should continue to plan journeys accounting for disruption caused by heavy rain and flooding. The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued Flood Warnings for counties in several states, while States of Emergency remain in effect in Iowa, Nebraska, and Wisconsin. Road closures, as well as some disruption to rail services, have been reported throughout the region. The NWS has forecast flooding to continue into next week.
Today, travelers in urban centers, including Brasilia, should avoid nationwide demonstrations against President Jair Bolsonaro’s proposed pension reform scheme. The rallies are being led by the CUT union, as well as several other labor unions and civic groups.
Today, travelers in Chile should avoid all demonstrations linked to the inaugural Prosur Bloc Summit in Santiago as a precaution. Activist groups have called for protests against Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, who is attending the event, while other unions and civil society groups will rally against Prosur’s perceived pro-market and right-wing slant. Demonstrators in Santiago will gather at 7:00 PM local time on Paseo Bulnes, near the summit venue, La Moneda. Related rallies are also planned in Valparaiso and other cities, most likely focusing on main squares and key thoroughfares.
Today, travelers in Saltillo and Torreon should avoid demonstrations planned in response to recent increases in public transportation fares. In Saltillo, demonstrators plan to assemble at 1:00 PM local time at Ateneo Fuente, continue to Boulevard V Carranza, and end their rally at Presidencia Municipal. In Torreon, student and other public transportation users will gather at the entrance to the Social and Political Sciences faculty building at the Universidad Autonoma de Coahuila before moving towards Plaza Mayor at 1:00 PM local time.
All travel to Venezuela should be deferred in the coming days, while travelers in country should minimize non-essential movement amid an ongoing political crisis. The situation has been exacerbated by sporadic power and telecommunications outages and shortages of food, water, and fuel. Juan Guaido, the National Assemblyrecognized interim President, is likely to call for further demonstrations against President Nicolas Maduro in the coming weeks. Travelers in country should continue to avoid all political gatherings due to the risk of unrest and harsh measures from security forces and pro-government militias, known as “colectivos.”
AFRICA & THE MIDDLE EAST
Travelers in Comoros should avoid all political gatherings linked to Sunday’s Presidential and Regional Elections as a precaution. A second round will be held on April 21 if no candidate secures 50% of the vote. Tensions have been high following what authorities claim was an attempt to assassinate President Azali Assoumani on March 7 during a campaign visit to Anjouan Island; however, the opposition has questioned whether any such incident took place and has alleged electoral fraud.
All travel to rural areas of North Kivu and Ituri provinces should be deferred due to persistent risks from rebel and militia activity. The insecurity has been exacerbated by an ongoing outbreak of the Ebola virus in several areas; on March 19, the Health Ministry reported 980 Ebola cases (915 confirmed) and 610 fatalities. The response to the outbreak has been hindered by an escalation in violence in affected areas, prompting some health organizations to suspend operations. Security forces are supporting medical staff at entrance and exit points, where travelers are screened prior to entering and exiting affected zones.
Today and tomorrow, travelers in Beirut should anticipate heightened security and associated traffic disruption during a visit by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Authorities have announced that trucks will not be allowed on public roads during the visit, with parking also prohibited in several areas, including downtown, Raouche, Ain Mreisse, Verdun and Corniche Mazraa. There is also potential for further demonstrations against US foreign policy in Lebanon and the wider region, as demonstrated by a protest outside the US Embassy in Aaoukar yesterday. All such gatherings should be avoided as a precaution.
Non-essential travel to Chikwawa, Machinga, Mangochi, Nsanje, and Phalombe districts should be deferred through Tuesday, March 26 following the passage of former Tropical Cyclone Idai, which has exacerbated recent flooding and significantly damaged transportation and electricity infrastructure. Chikwawa and Nsanje districts remain inaccessible by road; the Makhanga area within Nsanje has also been badly impacted. Meteorologists have warned of further heavy rain, which may prompt flash flooding.
Travelers in Bamako and other urban centers should continue to avoid all demonstrations linked to an ongoing nationwide teachers’ strike scheduled over living and working conditions. In addition, a rally over the current education crisis in Bamako will take place at 4:00 PM local time today from the Bourse du Travail to the Monument de l’Independance.
Non-essential travel to Manica, Zambezia and Sofala provinces, as well as several districts in Niassa, Gaza, Inhambane and Tete provinces, should be deferred until further notice following the passage of former Tropical Cyclone Idai. The Mozambique National Institute for Meteorology (INAM) has warned of severe thunderstorms and strong winds in these locations through today. Residual rainfall is likely to exacerbate the flooding and damage caused by Idai through Monday, March 25.
Tomorrow, travelers in Bauchi, Benue, Kano, Plateau and Sokoto states should exercise caution around re-run Gubernatorial Elections. The results of the initial March 9 elections in these states were declared inconclusive; a planned re-run in Adamawa state has been postponed indefinitely. An official investigation is also under way in Rivers state, where electoral processes were suspended by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). On March 20, a demonstration over alleged interference in the political process took place in Makurdi; further political rallies can be expected during the electoral cycle and should be avoided as a precaution.
Today, travelers in Tunis should avoid a planned protest by members of the Algerian diaspora against President Abdelaziz Bouteflika’s recent decision to postpone the Presidential Election in Algeria. Protesters plan to gather in front of the Algerian Embassy at 2:00 PM local time. A previous unauthorized gathering on March 1 was dispersed by police.
Non-essential travel to Chimanimani, Chipinge, Mutare, and Nyanga districts should be deferred through Tuesday, March 26 following the passage of former Tropical Cyclone Idai. Authorities have declared a State of Disaster in these districts after more than 100 people were killed, and 200 injured. Transportation infrastructure, communications networks, and electricity supplies have been severely damaged or disrupted. Sporadic rain and thunderstorms will continue across these districts today.
ASIA & THE PACIFIC
Travelers in Northern Territory’s Gulf Region should defer travel to areas along the path of Severe Tropical Cyclone Trevor from Groote Eylandt to the Northern Territory-Queensland state border. Trevor has strengthened into a Category 3 Cyclone (third-highest level on a five-tier scale) and continues to move southwest over the Gulf of Carpentaria. On its current trajectory, the weather system is expected to make landfall tomorrow near Borroloola as a Category 4 (fourth-highest) storm. Travelers in the far north of Queensland should expect residual disruption following Trevor’s first landfall near Lockhart River on March 19.
Today through Monday, March 25, travelers in coastal areas of Pilbara should plan journeys accounting for disruption during the passage of Severe Tropical Cyclone Veronica. According to the Bureau of Meteorology (BoM), the weather system is currently a Category 4 Cyclone (fourth-highest level on a five-tier scale). Veronica is forecast to move southwest and intensify into a Category 5 (highest level) storm as it approaches the Pilbara coast tomorrow. On its current trajectory, the cyclone is expected to make landfall early on Sunday, March 24 between Karratha and Port Hedland.
Passengers of Jet Airways should continue to anticipate disruption and reconfirm flights after the carrier significantly reduced its services. Yesterday, the airline canceled all flights from Delhi to main cities, with the exception of Mumbai. Ongoing financial difficulties have forced the carrier to ground much of its fleet, while pilots have threatened to stage a strike on April 1 if outstanding wages are not paid.
Today, travelers in Surabaya should plan journeys avoiding rallies by Muslim groups in solidarity with victims of the March 15 terrorist attacks in Christchurch. Gatherings from 12:30 PM to 1:00 PM local time will take place outside the Australian Consulate at the Esa Sampoerna Center and the New Zealand Honorary Consulate at 38 Jalan Sriwijaya. The events should remain peaceful but may cause local traffic disruption in their immediate vicinities.
Tomorrow, travelers in Kuala Lumpur should plan journeys bypassing a peace rally intended to express solidarity with victims of the March 15 terrorist attacks in Christchurch. Attendees will gather at the SOGO shopping complex before marching to Dataran Merdeka at 7:00 AM local time. The event is likely to be well-attended and liable to cause traffic disruption in its vicinity.
On Sunday, March 24, travelers in Brussels should anticipate disruption and plan routes bypassing an anti-racism demonstration to minimize inconvenience. Participants will gather at Gare du Nord at 2:00 PM local time, after which they will proceed through the city center towards Place du jeu de Balle, via Mont des Arts. A turnout numbering in the thousands is expected.
Today, travelers in Copenhagen should avoid the vicinity of Parliament, where two separate demonstrations are planned, due to the risk of local unrest. Supporters of the Islamist political group Hizb-ut-Tahrir will gather to hold a Friday prayer at 12:30 PM local time to commemorate the victims of the March 15 terrorist attacks in Christchurch. The Danish far-right political party, Stram Kurs, has called for a counter-demonstration at the same time in the area. There is a risk of clashes between rival participants or between police and demonstrators.
Travelers in urban centers should continue to avoid weekly protests by supporters of the “Yellow Vests” movement due to the risk of local unrest. On March 16, demonstrations attracted approximately 32,000 participants nationwide, 10,000 of them in Paris. Violent clashes broke out between protesters and security forces in Paris, and several shops were looted and torched on Avenue des Champs Elysees. Although this mobilization was presented as an “ultimatum” to the government, further protests have been announced for tomorrow.
Tomorrow, travelers in Rome should plan journeys bypassing a rally by climate activists. Demonstrators will gather at 2:00 PM local time in Piazza della Repubblica before marching to Piazza di Porta San Giovanni. The event is expected to be very well attended, with demonstrators from across Italy traveling to Rome to participate.
Tomorrow, travelers in Lisbon should plan routes avoiding a demonstration by teachers over a wage dispute. Participants will gather at Largo do Marques de Pombal at 3:00 PM local time. Further related protests and strikes are likely in the coming weeks if the dispute is not resolved.
Today, travelers using London’s Waterloo Train Station should anticipate significant disruption after overnight engineering works overran. Trains to and from the station began running at 7:00 AM local time; however, disruption is expected to persist until 2:00 PM local time.