Weather

States Brace for Dangerous Conditions From Winter Storm


A strong winter storm brought heavy snow to parts of the Southeast and was expected to leave about a foot of snow in parts of the Northeast on Sunday, with damaging ice possible in the Carolinas and Mid-Atlantic States, making travel hazardous and power outages likely.

In the South, where some governors declared states of emergency on Friday, areas such as central Mississippi had already received up to six inches of snow, while portions of Tennessee and Alabama received a mixture of snow and freezing rain, the National Weather Service said.

“This storm is going to be pretty significant in terms of generating travel impacts, outages and things of that nature,” said Rich Otto, a meteorologist with the Weather Service.

In Georgia, nearly 90,000 customers were without power on Sunday, according to PowerOutage.us, which aggregates data from utilities across the United States. South Carolina had nearly 95,000 customers without power, and North Carolina had about 35,000.

More than a quarter-inch of ice was expected to accumulate in the Piedmont regions of North and South Carolina on Sunday.

Forecasters said the storm system could bring more than a foot of snow to some areas, including parts of the Appalachians and upstate New York. Parts of the upper Midwest and northwest Pennsylvania could get up to two feet of snow, Mr. Otto said.

As the storm moves toward the Northeast on Sunday afternoon, it will remain inland, meaning cities closer to the coast, from Washington to Boston, will primarily receive heavy rain, Mr. Otto said.

Significant flooding was possible in parts of eastern Long Island and coastal New England on Sunday night and into Monday morning, he said.

Ben Gelber, a meteorologist at WCMH-TV in Columbus, Ohio, said on Saturday that “more people will be impacted by this storm than any winter storm we’ve had this season.”

Mr. Otto said that potential ice accumulations would be more severe in the Carolinas. The North Carolina Department of Transportation warned people on Sunday to stay off the roads, posting pictures of streets blanketed in snow and ice.

Elsewhere in the South, meteorologists said, northeastern Georgia and the Carolinas were expected to bear the brunt of freezing precipitation on Sunday.

Crews in Mississippi were working on Sunday morning to plow snow from highways, according to the Mississippi Department of Transportation.

On Friday, Gov. Ralph S. Northam of Virginia, Gov. Brian Kemp of Georgia and Gov. Roy Cooper of North Carolina all declared states of emergency.

“This upcoming weather system is likely to include additional downed trees, more electrical outages and significant impacts on travel conditions,” Mr. Northam said in his declaration, issued on his last full day in office. Virginia transportation officials were caught off guard early this month when a storm stranded hundreds of drivers on Interstate 95 south of Washington.

Mr. Northam warned that the storm could produce wind gusts of up to 70 miles per hour along the coast.





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