Winter Storm Shuts Northeast; South Still Reeling
(We're adding details to this post as the day continues.)
Well, this time around we can't complain about them getting it wrong.
-- 5:15 p.m. ET. Death Toll Rises
The Associated Press says at least 20 deaths were blamed on the storm. Among the dead: a pregnant woman struck by a mini-plow in New York City. Her baby was delivered via cesarean section and is in critical condition.
-- 12:20 p.m. ET. Death Toll At 14:
As of midday, 14 deaths had been attributed to the storm, according to The Associated Press. They include a truck driver in Virginia, who was killed Thursday morning as he cleared snow from a road. His vehicle was hit by another dump truck.
-- 10:30 a.m. ET. What To Expect:
The Weather Channel walks through what conditions will be like for the Thursday afternoon and Friday morning commutes from Washington, D.C., north into New England. Basically, the news isn't too good. While the snow, rain and ice will gradually stop falling, the temperatures are going to be low enough for things to freeze.
-- 8:25 a.m. ET. From South To North, Headlines Tell The Story:
"Now is not the time to get out on the roads." (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)
"Power outages top 100,000 statewide." (North Carolina's Raleigh News & Observer)
"D.C. area paralyzed by storm." (The Washington Post)
"Nasty nor'easter: 8.8" of snow, slippery sleet." (Philly.com)
"Tricky to predict but storm could be whopper." (Albany, N.Y., Times Union)
"Boston to get up to 5 inches of snow Thursday; W. Mass. could see 24." (Boston.com)
Just as expected and feared, a dangerous winter storm has now spread snow, sleet, ice, freezing rain or some combination of all four from Texas to the Mid-Atlantic. Next up: the Northeast and New England.
We've already seen how this storm can shut down traffic. It brought things to a standstill in parts of North Carolina on Wednesday.
What else has the storm done so far?
-- Fatalities. By the evening, the death toll stood at 20, mostly in traffic accidents. A pregnant woman who was struck by a snow plow in New York City was among the dead. Her baby, delivered via cesarean section, was in critical condition, The Associated Press reported. Also among the dead, a man who was hit by a falling tree limb in North Carolina.
-- Power outages. The weather conditions hit the South particularly hard. Utility crews worked to restore power to more than 750,000 homes and businesses, mostly in the Carolinas and Georgia. Atlanta alone had more than 200,000 outages.
-- Roads. The snow has ended in Atlanta, but state transportation officials advised motorists that it would be best to stay off the roads. Still, they said the "concern [isn't] as high as it was before." North Carolina's Charlotte Observer said "it will take a few days for the region to recover." from snow-clogging heavy snow and freezing rain that left hundreds of thousands without power. In Washington, D.C., officials said the snow emergency would end at 6:30 p.m. There was 8-10 inches of snow in some of the D.C. suburbs.
-- Cancellations. Schools are closed across the affected states. The federal government's offices in Washington, D.C., were closed Thursday. The weather also grounded more than 6,500 flights within the U.S., according to FlightAware.com. Thousands more were delayed. Amtrak has reduced service in the Northeast and canceled many trains that normally head south toward Florida and the Gulf Coast.
As for what's ahead the rest of today and Friday, the National Weather Service said the storm will continue to track Northeast, but the snow will begin to taper off Friday morning.
"Warmer air streaming in off the Atlantic should keep most of the precipitation as rain for coastal New England, with some mixing in of sleet or freezing rain possible," it said.
The service added that "heavy rain and mountain snow expected to continue across the Northwest corner of the nation."
If you've been stuck at home today — and are likely to be tomorrow, too — we want to remind everyone that Two-Way readers have many good ideas about good things to do: