Winter storm charges into East
Ice and snow combine into a travel monster
ARLINGTON, Va. – A brutal winter storm that dumped up to 20 inches of snow in the Midwest last week roared east Sunday, slamming some areas with up to a half-inch of ice while paralyzing the nation’s capital with several inches of snow.
Three deaths were reported in Missouri, two in Kansas and one in Virginia. More than 20 million people from Ohio to the East Coast remained under winter storm advisories or warnings late Sunday, the National Weather Service said.
In Washington, more than 5 inches
of snow fell in and around the city – and more was on the way. AccuWeather’s Tyler Roys said a high-pressure system was keeping the snow from heading north and trapping it over the D.C. area. The total could reach 8 inches before the snow ends early Monday, he said.
The Federal Aviation Administration ordered a ground stop at Dulles International Airport on Sunday night.
In suburban Arlington, Virginia, Aliya Jiwani was bundling her two daughters to play in the snow while worrying about the fate of a Monday morning flight to Chicago. “I tried to fly out during some snow last month – and it was a bit of a disaster,” she said. “So far my flight tomorrow is on schedule, but if we get more snow, who knows?”
Her concerns were valid. Nationwide, more than 600 flights had been canceled and 913 delayed Sunday as of 11 a.m. ET, according to flight-tracking service FlightAware.
Sunday’s troubles followed more than 460 cancellations on Saturday and about 300 on Friday. The storm canceled and delayed flights at airports from Colorado east for three days.
At Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport, Delta Flight 1708 arrived Sunday from Las Vegas and, after landing safely, slid off a taxiway on its way to the terminal, airport officials said. No injuries were reported among the 126 passengers and crew.
In North Carolina, ice was the problem. Some areas were hit with a halfinch of ice, which knocked down trees and power lines and made roads hazardous. Almost 200,000 homes and businesses were without power across the state at the peak of the outages. Repair crews were out, however, and the number was falling later in the day.
“Thank you for your patience,” Duke Energy spokeswoman Meredith Archie said. “We will continue to work to get the power back on.”
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam had declared a state of emergency “to prepare and coordinate the Commonwealth’s response” to the wintry blast.
Virginia State Police said one person was killed when a military surplus vehicle’s driver lost control in slick road conditions Saturday night on Interstate 81 in Pulaski County, leading the vehicle to be struck by two tractor-trailers.
Earlier, up to 20 inches of snow fell in parts of Missouri. A woman and her 14- year-old stepdaughter died after their car slid into a semitrailer in Clinton, about 80 miles southeast of Kansas City, the highway patrol said.
Another woman died when her car slid in northern Missouri and was hit by an oncoming SUV. In Kansas, a 62year-old man died after his pickup skidded into a concrete barrier, the patrol said. And another crash involved two semitrailers, killing a 41-year-old driver from Mexico.
St. Louis was blasted, forcing temporary closure of sections of Interstates 44, 64 and 70 around the city. Almost 50,000 customers remained without power Sunday in Missouri.
Snow covered roads and highways across much of southeastern Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Missouri and Kansas, adding to travel headaches.
Roys said the region can look forward to a warmup by midweek. But another storm was possible at week’s end, and he said it’s possible it could bring heavy snow.
“There are a lot of variables,” Roys said. “We will have a better idea of what is coming where in a few days.”
In Washington, more than 5 inches of snow coated the capital and the Lincoln Memorial.