From Georgia to New York, huge storm floods bury cities
A massive winter storm buried much of the US East Coast in as much as three feet of snow in some places up to yesterday, but travel bans were slowly lifting following overnight snow-clearing by emergency workers.
The storm stranded drivers on snowbound highways on the weekend and knocked out power to tens of thousands of people. A look at some of the impacts by state:
n Delaware: Firefighters helped about a dozen people evacuate Oak Orchard, a low-lying community in southern Delaware that often floods during storms. More than 5,000 homes and businesses lost electricity.
n GEORGIA: Utilities had restored power to more than 66,000 customers, though a few thousand more were still without service, a Georgia Power spokesman said.
n KENTUCKY: Motorists got stuck Friday night on Interstate 75 south of Lexington as wrecks and blowing snow brought traffic to a halt. Officials went from vehicle to vehicle, checking on marooned drivers; distributing water, fuel and snacks; and helping people get to shelters set up at churches and public schools along the highway.
A transportation worker died while plowing snow-covered highways near Bowling Green, and a man died when his car collided with a salt truck.
- MAINE: Snow pros in the Bangor Police Department offered advice to points south, instructing the snowbound to keep generators gassed up but outside.
Running a generator inside can result in deadly carbon monoxide filling the house. Their Facebook post said, "The men and women of the Bangor Police Department are rooting for you."
- MARYLAND: Despite the high winds and tremendous volume of snowfall there was only one reported death in Baltimore, and officials aren't even sure it's snow-related, said Bob Maloney, Baltimore director of the Office of Emergency Management.
- NEW JERSEY: Most major highways in New Jersey were cleared early yesterday, including the Garden State Parkway and the New Jersey Turnpike.
Nonetheless, reduced speed limits were in place on most of those roadways, and drivers were being urged to use extra caution and to avoid travel if possible. Officials say roads should be in good shape for 0today's morning commute.
- NEW YORK: All rail service in and out of New York's Grand Central Terminal got the greenlight to resume yesterday afternoon after a record-setting blizzard hammered the city.
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) said service on the Metro-North lines at outlying terminals in New York and Connecticut got underway at noon. Service on the Long Island Rail Road remains suspended.
The MTA said the goal was to bring back service for today's morning commute. Three people died while shovelling snow in New York City, where over 25 inches of snow in Central Park marked the third-largest snowfall since record-keeping began in 1869, police and weather officials said.
- VIRGINIA: Firefighters evacuated tenants from 24 apartments in two northern Virginia apartment buildings after one partially collapsed and the other showed signs of weakening early yesterday, Prince William County officials said.
They said the cause of the collapse appeared to be snowfall of approximately 28 inches during the past 36 hours in Manassas. One man was killed on Saturday in a single-vehicle crash in Virginia Beach that police blamed on speed and icy road conditions, and Virginia Tech film-maker Jerry Scheeler died Friday while shovelling snow outside his new house in Daleville, local news media reported Sunday. On Saturday, the state medical examiner's office confirmed three other storm deaths.
- WASHINGTON, DC: Public schools in the District of Columbia remained closed today, Mayor Muriel Bowser said. The school system is responsible for nearly 49,000 students. Bowser told a news conference yesterday morning that officials were still assessing whether city government offices would open today. Mass transit in the nation's capital was still shut down.