Southwest Airlines

Even after a brutal hurricane season, airlines are doing just fine

Even after a brutal hurricane season, airlines are doing just fine

Only days after monster storm Irma made landfall in Florida, canceling and delaying thousands of flights, the head of the world’s largest airline appeared unfazed, voicing glowing optimism about the future of air carriers.

Speaking at an industry conference in Washington, D.C., Doug Parker, the chief executive of American Airlines, said the impact of Irma and the earlier hurricane that tore through Houston will be short lived.

“I don’t anticipate a financial impact to us other than the near-term financial impact,” he said. “I feel as good about this business as I ever have.

How could that be in a time when monster storms are more common — and some fear that travel...