Air travelers heading for distant parts of the world this New Year’s holiday could be flying into a void of information – and maybe trouble – about Y2K preparations, the Transportation Department’s inspector general says.

There is major uncertainty about Y2K readiness in some foreign countries where Y2K preparedness has been “sketchy or known to be inadequate,” Kenneth Mead, the transportation official, said in testimony prepared for a hearing today of the Senate’s special Y2K panel.