Storm ends up dumping snow on US Northeast

People in the northeast of the United States were hit on Monday with a snowy blast from a storm that had been pounding large parts of the continental US since before Thanksgiving.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo declared a state of emergency and sent out 300 members of the National Guard. State police have responded to more than 740 storm-related accidents across the northeastern state since the snow started falling.

By Monday afternoon, the storm had deposited nearly 27 inches (68.6 centimeters) of snow in Delanson, New York, nearly 40 kilometers northwest of the state capital Albany.

More than 660 flights into and out of the US were canceled on Monday, and more than 4,000 were delayed, according to flight-tracking site FlightAware. Airports in the New York and Boston areas accounted for many of the disruptions.

Alternating rain and snow showers switched to snow by midday, and were forecast by the National Weather Service to accumulate by the workday’s end up to 3 inches in New York and up to 6 inches in Boston.

More than 50 million people in the US faced a winter weather alert continuing into Monday afternoon, said CNN meteorologist Dave Hennen.

In New York City, snowplow drivers were given a police escort for the first time.

“One of the things we’ve learned from past storms is that our sanitation plows need to get where the need is greatest, and sometimes they can’t do that alone,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said in a news conference at the Office of Emergency Management headquarters in Brooklyn.

“So from now on, the NYPD will be escorting sanitation plows when necessary to get them through,” said de Blasio, referring to the New York Police Department. “If there is a traffic jam up and we need the plows to get where the problem is greatest, NYPD is going to lead the way.”

Meteorologist Bob Oravec, of the National Weather Service’s Weather Prediction Center, said heavy snowfalls were expected in upstate New York, Pennsylvania, northwestern New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, southern Vermont, southern New Hampshire and Maine, with some areas already receiving a foot of snow.

“When it’s all said and done, some areas will have over 2 feet (61 cm) of snow from this storm, especially over parts of the Poconos and Catskills,” Oravec said of the mountain regions.

For many, the storm made for a complicated first day back at work after the long holiday weekend.

“I just hate driving in snow,” Kaia Jansson said as she cleared snow off her car in Albany. “It’s always a mess, and it’s cold and not fun.”

In Boston, there also was concern about Tuesday.

“Remember, the final burst of snow comes tonight and during the Tuesday morning commute,” tweeted Michael Page, a meteorologist at NBC Boston. “Your drive to work around Greater Boston will be much more wintry tomorrow than today.”

Alana Kirkpatrick of Nashua, New Hampshire, threw up a question as she brushed mounds of snow from her car: “Why do I still live in New England?”

In Chicago, three sections of the Lakefront Trail were closed on Monday, due to high waves from Lake Michigan crashing across the shoreline.

Reuters and AP contributed to this story.

(China Daily 12/04/2019 page12)

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