Published: Sun, February 12, 2017
USA | By Cassandra Hanson

Snowstorm pounds the Northeast, affecting flights, closing schools


Like many school districts throughout the state, almost all schools in eastern MA - including Boston, Cambridge and Somerville schools - are closed.

In North Jersey, heavy snow was falling at Sussex County Airport at 5 a.m., and light snow was reported in Morristown, Somerville, Newark and Teterboro.

Dozens of motorists got stranded on New York's Long Island after they couldn't make it up icy ramps.

State offices in New Jersey were closed, as were the courts in MA.

CT state police have answered hundreds of calls and responded to dozens of accidents, according to Governor Daniel Malloy: "We urge people to stay indoors, and don't get into your auto unless you absolutely have to".

Long Island New York, as well as parts of Rhode Island and eastern MA, were all under blizzard warnings for much of the day. "We came off of an nearly snowless winter past year, which is where a lot of the watersheds get their runoff off, and then we had a pretty dry summer to boot".

By Thursday morning, heavy snow snarled the morning rush in New York City.

The National Weather Service has replaced a Winter Storm Watch it issued last night and upgraded it Wednesday morning to a Winter Storm Warning for the entire state of CT. The powerful system quickly dumped large amounts of heavy snow.

"There definitely is a sharp transition right now between the northern part of the state and the New Jersey Turnpike region", said Chad Shafer, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service's regional forecast office in Mount Holly.

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Think of it as the one-night stand (one-day stand?) of snowstorms - notable and fun while it's happening, but over before you know it. Unable to get around safely by auto and hampered by snowy sidewalks, some New Yorkers got creative.

"We're expecting a big storm in the city".

Nor'easters get their name from the winds that blow from the northeast ahead of a storm's arrival as it moves up the Eastern Seaboard, remaining offshore.

The number of flight arrivals and departures canceled from Wednesday to Friday due to the winter storm grew to 4,337 Thursday, according to the flight-tracking website FlightAware.

The region had a nor'easter on January 24 that jammed roads and caused major disruptions in air travel.

New Yorkers will experience a bit of "weather whiplash".

The change in weather follows a spring-like day when much of the Northeast was enjoying 60 degree temperatures.

The mild conditions will be extremely short-lived as temperatures plummet overnight and pave the way for snow.

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