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Thursday, February 13, 2014

Tracking Historic Storm State by State

A powerful winter storm system that has contributed to more than a dozen deaths and has left more than 700,000 customers in 14 states without electricity intensified Thursday as it moved north into the Mid-Atlantic States and New England, as my colleagues Marc Santora and Kim Severson report.

More than 6,000 flights have been canceled into and within the United States, according to FlightAware. Travel up and down the Interstate-95 corridor from Georgia to Massachusetts was treacherous. In the New York City metropolitan area, my colleague Andy Newman is providing live updates.

Here’s a state-by-state guide for what the National Weather Service has described as “an event of historical proportions.”

Connecticut | Delaware | District of Columbia | Georgia | Maryland | Massachusetts | New Jersey | New York | North Carolina | Pennsylvania | Rhode Island | South Carolina | Virginia


With near-blizzard and white-out conditions developing on Thursday, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy of Connecticut urged people to stay off the roads. State offices and courts were closed. Mr. Malloy warned on Twitter that the storm was sticking around.

The state’s entire fleet of 632 trucks along with an additional 200 trucks from contractors were already treating roads.


With snow turning to a wintry mix in Delaware on Thursday morning, people were urged to stay off the roads. Gov. Jack Markell issued a warning for drivers in Kent and New Castle Counties, reports Delaware Online. An accident closed northbound Interstate 95 just north of the toll plaza around 9 a.m., state officials said.

The University of Delaware canceled classes on Thursday. Other cancellations were reported across the state.


A snow-covered path near the Capitol building in Washington.Mladen Antonov/Agence France-Presse â€" Getty Images A snow-covered path near the Capitol building in Washington.

With heavy snow falling overnight, Washington woke up to its biggest storm since 2009. Federal government offices were closed, and schools shut down. At American University, 11 inches of snow piled up.

More snow was recorded in the District of Columbia this year than in Omaha, Neb., the National Weather Service noted.

The snow overnight turned to a mix of sleet, ice and rain by Thursday morning. But forecasters from The Washington Post’s Capital Weather Gang blog, warned that more snow was likely for Friday night, along with continuing hazardous conditions.

A local radio station gathered snow emergency information for residents.


A driver found a path cleared by tire tracks on a road in Peachtree Corners, Ga.John Amis/Associated Press A driver found a path cleared by tire tracks on a road in Peachtree Corners, Ga.

Two weeks after a couple of inches of snow created chaos in the Atlanta area, most people heeded warnings to stay home Wednesday and Thursday as ice and snow pelted parts of Georgia, knocking out power to tens of thousands of people.

According to the Georgia Power Company, more than 236,000 customers are without power in the state. Areas hardest hit by icing include communities in the Atlanta metropolitan area and in Augusta, officials said.

Given the conditions, Gov. Nathan Deal extended the declaration of an emergency through Sunday.

Meanwhile, with the help of more than 6,000 employees working to repair service, Georgia Power has restored service to 280,000 customers since Wednesday.

The National Weather Service called the storm in Georgia “an event of historical proportions,” drawing comparison to an ice storm in 2000 that left more than half a million homes without power in the Atlanta area.

Governor Deal, who had apologized for slow government response on Jan. 28 that left thousands of people stranded on clogged roadways for hours and children stuck in schools overnight, promised the state would be better prepared this time. And the response was smoother. Mr. Deal and Mayor Kasim Reed of Atlanta implored people to remain home, and called in all resources, including the state’s National Guard.

With the ice still coating trees and roads, people were urged to stay put in their homes as utility crews worked to restore power and roads continued to be treated. Temperatures were above freezing on Thursday and expected to rise Friday into the 50s, creating new problems of melting ice.


A worker clears snow from a walkway in Towson, Md.Steve Ruark/Associated Press A worker clears snow from a walkway in Towson, Md.

As much as 19 inches of snow was reported in some parts of Maryland.

The heaviest snow arrived before the morning rush, but that did not keep some motorists from venturing out onto the slippery roads.

In this photo, drivers found themselves in a traffic jam on the Beltway after a tractor-trailer flipped. Numerous other collisions were reported around the state.

While there was a break in the precipitation late this morning, another one to three inches of snow was expected to begin falling late Thursday afternoon.

Here are some of the snowfall totals from around the state as of Thursday afternoon, as noted by a local television station, WJZ in Baltimore, a CBS affiliate. The station’s website also has information on cancellations, closings and updates on the roads.

These are the snow totals we are seeing right now:
Pimlico: 15.0″
Westminster: 19.0″
Towson: 15.8″
Frederick: 18″
Reisterstown: 18.0″
Glyndon: 18.0″
Sykesville: 10.0″
BWI: 12.3″
Columbia: 14.0″
Bel Air: 10.0″
Rockville: 12.5″
Elkridge: 13.0″
Rosedale: 13.0″
Hereford: 12.8″
Catonsville: 11.8″



Abandoned vehicles sit along a roadside in Chapel Hill, N.C., on Thursday.Gerry Broome/Associated Press Abandoned vehicles sit along a roadside in Chapel Hill, N.C., on Thursday.

As the Lede previously reported, hundreds of motorists abandoned their cars in Raleigh, Charlotte and other metropolitan areas across the state when they were caught in traffic jams on slippery, snow-covered roads on Wednesday.

And the National Weather Service issued a winter storm warning for much of central North Carolina until 6 p.m. Thursday that said:


The weather was so bad that the highly anticipated basketball game between Duke and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill was canceled Wednesday night.

On Thursday, abandoned cars still lined roads as crews continued to treat pavement in expectation that more snow was coming.

Only abandoned vehicles blocking intersections or impeding traffic were being towed. Officials asked people not to venture out to get their cars until Friday. To give people a sense of what the roads look like, the town of Chapel Hill was posting pictures on Twitter of ice-covered roads.


John Wood of Bordentown, N.J., delivered heating oil in Trenton.Mel Evans/Associated Press John Wood of Bordentown, N.J., delivered heating oil in Trenton.

In New Jersey, Gov. Chris Christie issued a state of emergency and urged people to stay off the roads.

Governor Christie also reminded everyone on Twitter of a second wave of snow coming later Thursday.

New Jersey Transit trains were operating, but there were multiple delays caused by Amtrak switch problems.

And, on Twitter, Mr. Christie shared several photos from New Jersey residents, using the hashtag #NJsnowday


My colleague Andy Newman is providing live updates on the storm and the impact that it is having in the New York City metropolitan area, including a heated debate over the city’s decision to open public schools.


For a pedestrian in Philadelphia, streets were largely free of vehicular obstacles.Jessica Kourkounis/Getty Images For a pedestrian in Philadelphia, streets were largely free of vehicular obstacles.

About nine inches of snow fell in Philadelphia overnight, making it the fourth storm of the season generating more than six inches of snow. This set a record for the snowiest time in the city’s history.

The Philadelphia area got a break starting late morning before the second wave of snow and freezing rain begins to fall.


Up to nine inches of snow is expected by end of day in Rhode Island, as The Providence Journal reports, with a higher accumulation expected in the north.


The ice and snow on Wednesday downed tree branches and power lines, knocking out power for hundreds of thousands of people overnight.

Gov. Nikki Haley asked people to “hunker down” through the storm, noting that it was the worst to hit the state since 2000. The state opened more shelters for people in need of heat, as many could be without power for several days.

On Thursday afternoon, the South Carolina Emergency Management Division warned motorists to stay off the roads and to monitor local forecasts for changing weather conditions. The state’s Department of Transportation provided live updates on road conditions.


People pushed a car that was stuck in the snow in Alexandria, Va.Michael Reynolds/European Pressphoto Agency People pushed a car that was stuck in the snow in Alexandria, Va.

The storm brought six to 18 inches of heavy snow overnight across most of the state. A mixture of sleet and freezing rain continued into Thursday afternoon.

The Virginia Department of Emergency Management is posting live updates about the storm on Tumblr. A sampling from Thursday:

-Travel conditions are still hazardous. Heavy snow, gusty winds and potential ice accumulations of up to a quarter of an inch are being reported. Travel should be postponed so VDOT and contractor crews can clear the roads.
-While roads are open throughout the Commonwealth, more than 1,000 are in moderate to severe condition, which means they are mostly or partially covered with snow and/or ice. VDOT is focusing on clearing interstates and primary roads first.
-One fatality has been confirmed in the Office of the Chief Medical Examiners Central Region as the result of a motor vehicle crash.
-Temperatures are forecast to stay below freezing until Friday.
-5,000 customers are without power statewide.