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Blizzard blows into northeast U.S.; flights canceled, schools shut

Sunny days and T-shirt-wearing temperatures made it seem like winter had made an early exit. Winter storm warnings and watches have been hoisted over a region stretching from North Virginia into Maine.

While people mostly heeded dire warnings to stay home and off the roads, police said a 16-year-old girl was killed when she lost control of her auto on a snowy road and hit a tree in Gilford, N.H. In Chicago, the forecast called for 3 to 6 inches of snow, the city’s first significant snowfall since mid-December.

Blizzard warnings were issued in parts of Connecticut, Massachusetts and upstate NY – with some areas near the NY state capital of Albany forecast to get up to 76cm of snow on Tuesday night.

While children and dogs took to the streets to play in the snow, many New Yorkers welcomed the storm as a respite from the usual bustle of daily life. While Manhattan was spared the worst, New York’s Westchester and Putnam counties got more than a foot of snow, while Orange County, a little farther afield, logged 17 inches.

In 2016 NY experienced the biggest snowstorm in the city’s history, with a record 27.3 inches falling in Central Park in 24 hours. The area, which was forecast to receive up to 20 inches of snow, was also hit with sleet. In parts of NY state, snow piled up steadily throughout the day Tuesday.

Utilities in the New England and Mid-Atlantic states reported downed poles and power lines. Boston could see as much as 12 inches of snow for the metro region. Parts of eastern MA have seen explosive gusts reaching 70 miles per hour.

MA reported more than 60,000 outages yesterday. The family was downstairs at the time, the station reported. “This is a serious winter storm”, Hogan said, adding that some parts of the state could see over a foot of snow. “Mother Nature is an unpredictable lady sometimes”. “She was unpredictable today”. And the above-ground portions of the NY subway system were being shut down.

Though the storm’s most powerful portion moved out to sea, it still was expected to affect eastern Quebec.

Declaring a state of emergency, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said commuters should expect road closures, delays and cancellations. Empire Service will still be on a modified schedule, according to the company.

Above-ground subway service was suspended as transit officials in the NY metro area warned that more bus and train routes might be suspended throughout the day.

Tuesday, one town in CT had collected 13 inches of snow, Newark, Del., reported 4 inches, the NY hamlet of Endwell saw 23 inches and Agawam, Mass., measured 10 inches.

The heaviest snowfall was expected Tuesday morning through the afternoon, with snowfall rates as high as 2 to 4 inches per hour.

A snow emergency had been declared in the city, meaning vehicles will be towed if they are parked on roads marked as snow emergency arteries. In a news release Monday night, the agency said 50 miles per hour winds predicted from the pending storm could create hazardous conditions that would make it hard for Coast Guard units to reach any distressed mariners. “Our biggest concern right now is the treacherous driving conditions”.

In Connecticut, a statewide ban on highway travel went into effect Tuesday at 5 a.m. EDT.

A blustery late-season storm plastered the Northeast with sleet and snow Tuesday, paralyzing much of the Washington-to-Boston corridor but falling well short of the predicted snow totals in New York, Boston and Philadelphia. Those were on top of about 1,658 flights canceled Monday.

As for travel, flights are taking off and landing again at airports in the Northeast.

The U.S. House of Representatives in Washington, D.C., canceled votes for Tuesday and are scheduled to meet again late Wednesday. The Democrat also directed non-essential state employees to stay home from work as authorities advised people to stay off the roads. Schools in New Hampshire and MA were affected the most, with 914 and 630 closings or delays scheduled, respectively. Schools were to be closed again in Boston on Wednesday.

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The Port Authority of NY and New Jersey prepared hundreds snow-clearing vehicles at the three major NY area airports. Icy roads in Chicago led to two auto wrecks early today that involved 34 vehicles. A State Police spokesman says seven people sustained minor injuries in Monday night’s pileup on the Kennedy Expressway. The city got less than 2 inches of snow. The men were 64 to 76 years old, according to ABC Milwaukee affiliate WISN-TV.

Workers clear the streets from ice and snow in Brooklyn New York

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