US Northeast digs out from blizzard
Updated: 2013-02-11 10:50
CAMBRIDGE, Mass./NEW YORK - The US Northeast started digging itself out on Sunday after a blizzard dumped up to 40 inches (1 meter) of snow with hurricane force winds, killing at least nine people and leaving hundreds of thousands without power.
New York City trucks plowed through residential streets, leaving hundreds, if not thousands, of motorists to dig their buried vehicles out from mountains of snow.
"I give up," Giovanni Marchenna, 52, of Manhattan said with a laugh.
"Looks like I'll be taking the subway to work until the snow melts," he added, noting he spent more than an hour shoveling snow.
Utility companies reported that some 350,000 customers were still without electricity across nine states after the wet, heavy snow brought down tree branches and power lines. About 700,000 homes and businesses were without power at one point on Saturday.
Air traffic began to return to normal on Sunday after some 5,800 flights were canceled on Friday and Saturday, according to Flightaware, a flight tracking service.
Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks, Connecticut, and New York state's Long Island MacArthur Airport reopened on Sunday morning. Both had been closed on Saturday.
Boston's Logan International Airport reopened late on Saturday, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.
Rare travel bans in Connecticut and Massachusetts were lifted but roads throughout the region remained treacherous, according to state transportation departments.
Cambridge, Massachusetts, residents were digging out their cars and driveways under clear blue skies on Sunday afternoon.
Charles Damico, a retired electrical engineer who was clearing his driveway with a snowblower, said the snow was "nothing" compared to the amount he remembers falling during the blizzard of 1978 that dumped between 2 and 4 feet (60 and 122 cm) of snow on the region.
"I didn't have a snowblower at that time, so everything was done by hand," he said. "This is nothing compared to it."
As the region recovered, another large winter storm building across the Northern Plains was expected to leave a foot (30 cm)of snow and bring high winds from Colorado to central Minnesota into Monday, the National Weather Service said.
Fresh Storm Brewing
South Dakota was expected to be hardest hit, with winds reaching 50 miles per hour (80 kph), creating white-out conditions. The storm was expected to reach parts of Nebraska, North Dakota, Wyoming and Wisconsin.
South Dakota officials closed a 150-mile (240-km) stretch of Interstate 90 in the center of the state. They also closed 75 miles (120 km) of Interstate 29 in the state's northeastern corner near North Dakota.
Officials said motels and other facilities along Interstate 90 were filling up with travelers trying to avoid the heavy drifting and near-zero visibility.