According to data from flight-tracking website FlightAware.com, Delta Flight 431 departed New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport shortly after 8 a.m. ET and arrived in San Juan at noon.
Just 40 minutes later, Delta Flight 302 departed San Juan's Luis Munoz Marin International Airport with 173 passengers before ultimately arriving safely back at JFK at 4:22 p.m.
Flight radar captured the incredible path of both flights, which managed to narrowly avoid the Category 5 storm's powerful core.
You really want to fly into SJU during a category 5 hurricane, DL431?— Jason Rabinowitz (@AirlineFlyer) September 6, 2017
Everyone else has turned around. pic.twitter.com/nHdChvYh2Y
While seemingly risky, Delta says that both flights were instead well calculated.Here they go! DL302 now taxiing for takeoff before #Irma gets really bad. pic.twitter.com/CNfk5L6oaa— Jason Rabinowitz (@AirlineFlyer) September 6, 2017
"Our meteorology team is the best in the business," said Delta's vice president of operations and customer center, Erik Snell, via The Washington Post. "They took a hard look at the weather data and the track of the storm and worked with the flight crew and dispatcher to agree it was safe to operate the flight."
"Our flight and ground crews were incredible in their effort to turn the aircraft quickly and safely so the flight could depart well before the hurricane threat."
According to the Post, the 28 mph winds and gusts up to 36 mph in San Juan Wednesday afternoon were well below operating limits for the Boeing 737.
Nonetheless, Wednesday's Delta flight was the last in and out of San Juan before conditions began to worsen and air traffic control ceased operations at the airport.