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01/19/2012 03:21 pm ET

Sea-Tac Airport Experiences Major Travel Delays Due To Icy Conditions In Seattle Area

Parts of Washington continue to experience harsh winter weather thanks to a storm system passing over the Pacific Northwest, bringing icy conditions and travel delays.

For the first time in ten years, icy conditions forced the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport to shut down completely early Thursday morning, Seattle's Q13 FOX reports. About 70 flights were canceled Wednesday.

All runways were closed down between 4:30 a.m. and 7:30 a.m. PST, according to the Seattle Times.

As of 11:43 a.m. PST on Thursday two runways at Sea-Tac Airport were open for arrivals and departures.

Airport officials are warning passengers to expect delays.

A passenger who spent the night at the Sea-Tac airport after her flights were canceled said she's seen the storm's effect on travel.

"When I got here .... there were no hotel shuttles, no taxis running, no pizza delivery to bring us food. Nothing," Nikki Waldron, of Fairbanks, Alaska, told the Seattle Times.

The National Weather Service issued an ice storm warning at 10:39 a.m. PST, stating freezing rain will remain in the area until about 2 p.m.

The storm has also created treacherous road conditions, which caused at least one car to fall into a nearby creek in Oregon. The accident claimed the life of a child, the Associated Press reports.

Officials have closed down several roadways for avalanche control and falling trees, KOMO News reports.

Inclement weather that approached the Seattle vicinity Tuesday night was forecasted to be one of the area's worst snowstorms in decades.

An official at Pangborn Memorial Airport, a regional airport in Central Washington, told the Wenatchee World that staff had been working to keep runways clear in light of the threatening weather conditions early Thursday morning.

Airport manager Greg Phillips said catching a flight to Seattle was probably not going to be easy due to delays at Sea-Tac, but he jokingly offered a solution to the airport's troubles.

"I've suggested that Sea-Tac divert all their flights here," he told the news organization. "Of course, we'd need more coffee in the cafe, but I think we could do it."

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