Storm Leaves Northeast Digging Out, Hundreds of Thousands Without Power, 6,300 Flights Cancelled
A major winter storm battered the Northeast, leaving in its wake a blanket of snow from New York to Maine, much as forecasters had predicted.
Although New York City escaped with less snow than had been forecast, most of the region was hit harder than predicted. Over three feet (91 cm) of snow fell in Connecticut and more than two feet (61 cm) of snow fell in Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Massachusetts and on Long Island. In Massachusetts, coastal flooding necessitated the evacuation of multiple communities, where waves reached over 20 feet (6 meters) and streets were flooded.
As of 10 p.m. Saturday, Boston’s Logan Airport remained closed and two other airports in the region, Providence and Toronto, were reporting excessive delays. While all New York area airports reopened Saturday morning, John F. Kennedy International Airport was reporting significant delays. Flightstats, an online flight tracking service, reported that 2,156 flights were cancelled Saturday while 2,701 were delayed. Yesterday, 3,378 were cancelled and 5,294 were delayed. The total number of flights cancelled since Friday was 6,333 since Friday, when the storm hit. Logan Airport was expecting to reopen one runway late Saturday night.
Throughout the region, the wet snow and wind gusts of as much as 80 mph (129 km/h) resulted in power failures and accidents. Hundreds of thousands of people remain without power Saturday night; over 400,000 are in Massachusetts.
The Long Island Expressway in New York lived up to its nickname and quickly became the Long Island Parking Lot in Suffolk County. The storm hit so quickly that hundreds of motorists abandoned their cars on roads as the snow piled up. Brookhaven, Long Island reported 30.3” (84 cm) at 6 a.m. Saturday morning.
The Postal Service suspended mail delivery across New England and in New York’s Hudson Valley. FedEx and UPS were not making deliveries in much of the region as well.
At least ten deaths were blamed on the store, including an 11-year-old boy in Boston who died of carbon-monoxide poisoning after sitting in a car to warm up. The car’s exhaust was blocked by snow. The storm also caused a 19-car pileup in Cumberland, Maine.
The nor’easter was the result of the collision of two storm systems: cold air traveling south from Canada bumped into a moist low-pressure system heading north from the Carolinas.
(Photo: Accura Media Group)