A deadly winter storm that hit the West Coast and northern Midwest hard as millions of travelers returned home from their Thanksgiving holiday is now taking aim at the Northeast. The storm may cause hundreds of flight cancellations early Monday.
The storm has for days has been dumping heavy snow from parts of California to the northern Midwest and hitting other areas with heavy rain, has been responsible for several deaths, according to reports.
The National Weather Service (NWS) predicted more than a foot of snow in parts of upstate New York and the New England region, as well as ice accumulations in parts of Pennsylvania.
As the storm moved east, flight delays and cancellations piled up, disrupting travelers heading home after Thanksgiving. By 5:23 a.m., there were a total of 488 flight cancellations within the U.S. and 262 delays.
In New York, numerous schools announced closings and Gov. Andrew Cuomo advised non-essential state employees to stay home as the storm was forecast to bring snow, sleet, wind and rain through the day Monday.
NWS in Buffalo posted this message: “Updated forecast: Expect total snow accumulation of 8-12 inches from Ontario County eastward to Lewis County, 4-7 inches for the Genesee Valley, and 1-3 inches in far Western NY. Additional ice amounts of a tenth of an inch or less this eve before the change to all snow. #nywx“
State police had responded to more than 550 storm-related crashes across New York by 7 p.m. today and Cuomo placed National Guard personnel on standby. Icy roads caused numerous crashes on Interstate 84 in Pennsylvania today and a section of Interstate 81 north of Binghamton was closed because of icy conditions for a while.
Newark, N.J, had more than 30 flight cancellations and some inbound planes were being delayed by an average of more than 2 and a half hours due to the weather. There were also dozens of flight delays in Chicago and Minneapolis.