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US Northeast digs out of blizzard as brutal cold bears down
07 January 2018, 11:52 | Rodolfo Wallace
US Northeast digs out of blizzard as brutal cold bears down
From Baltimore to Caribou, Maine efforts were underway to clear roadways of ice and snow as wind chill temperatures were to plunge during the day, reaching -40 F (-40 C) in some parts after sundown, according to the National Weather Service.
The National Weather Service forecast winds up to 113km/h, which downed power lines.
After bringing rare snowfall to the southeast a day earlier, the storm carried rapid accumulation and high winds to NY, where subway systems appeared less crowded than usual as many commuters heeded officials' warnings to stay home. The snow storm brought a break in extreme cold temperatures that have gripped much of the region since Christmas, frozen part of the Niagara Falls, played havoc with public works and impeded firefighting in places where temperatures barely broke 20 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 6 centigrade).
On Thursday, heavy snowfall, glacial temperatures and high winds sparked by a "bomb cyclone" storm had combined to force the cancellation of some 4,300 flights, while another 3,500 were delayed. It is expected that there will be a buildup of more than 10m inches of Snow in the City of NY.
The Boston area received 30cm of snow, with more on the way, according to the US National Weather Service.
The wintry weather has been blamed for at least 13 deaths over the past few days, including three fatalities in North Carolina traffic accidents and three in Texas due to cold. In Boston, Mayor Marty Walsh said schools would remain closed today.
In the southeast, some cities saw their heaviest snowfall in almost 30 years yesterday, according to AccuWeather.com senior meteorologist Alan Reppert.
Schools were ordered closed in NY, many parts of New Jersey, Boston and elsewhere throughout the region.
New York City declared a "Winter Weather Emergency" with both La Guardian and JFK airports and the city's main ferry service were temporarily suspended.
Two flights between Dublin and the United States have been cancelled so far today as a result of weather.
Flights resumed from the region's bustling airports in Boston and NY, although 20 percent were again cancelled at John F. Kennedy airport and 30 percent from La Guardia, the FlightAware website said. LaGuardia on Thursday evening announced on Twitter that the suspension had been lifted.
Passenger train operator Amtrak was running reduced service in the northeast, while mass-transit systems in major metropolitan areas, including NY and Boston, remained open. But the Port Authority of NY and New Jersey said flights at JFK would not resume until 7 am Friday. Sporadic delays were reported on transit systems, including New York's Long Island Rail Road and Metro-North commuter lines, as well as the Boston area's Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority system.
In New York's Fort Greene neighbourhood, Mohammed Farid Khan said his morning commute took three times as long as usual because of train woes.
In central Boston, a 1m tidal surge flooded a subway station and turned a popular tourist district into a slushy tundra. Firefighters used an inflatable raft to rescue one motorist from a vehicle surrounded by water up to its door handles, Boston Fire Commissioner Joseph Finn told reporters.
The storm's impact extended to eastern Canada.
On Wednesday, the same storm brought historic cities in the Southeastern United States their heaviest snowfall in three decades.
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