Storms trig­ger travel headaches

More than 30 states bat­tle wind and snow

USA TODAY US Edition - - NEWS | NATION - John Ba­con

An un­re­lent­ing win­ter storm marching east from the Plains and Mid­west on Sun­day was one of a se­ries of weather calami­ties fac­ing weary Thanks­giv­ing week­end trav­el­ers across the nation mak­ing their way home.

In the North­east, a pow­er­ful nor’easter was col­lid­ing with cold air to trig­ger the first heavy snow of the year from New Jersey to Bos­ton. Ac­cuWeather se­nior me­te­o­rol­o­gist Alan Rep­pert said Penn­syl­va­nia, New York and New Jersey were al­ready see­ing some of the day’s worst weather Sun­day – ice, snow and wind.

Some ar­eas could get an inch of snow an hour start­ing Sun­day af­ter­noon and last­ing into Mon­day. To­tal snow ac­cu­mu­la­tions of up to 16 inches and a tenth of an inch of ice can be ex­pected in some ar­eas around Bos­ton, the Na­tional Weather Ser­vice said.

“The @Ci­ty­ofBos­ton [email protected]­tonPWD are well pre­pared for the storm that’s com­ing #Bos­ton’s way,” Mayor Marty Walsh tweeted.

In Buf­falo, a Delta Con­nec­tion flight from New York slid off a taxi­way fol­low­ing an “un­event­ful land­ing” Sun­day morn­ing, Delta Air Lines con­firmed to USA TODAY. None of the 64 pas­sen­gers were in­jured, the air­line said.

Penn­syl­va­nia Emer­gency Man­age­ment Agency Di­rec­tor Randy Pad­field said parts of the state could see snow through Tues­day morn­ing. A foot of snow was forecast for parts of north­east Penn­syl­va­nia.

“With a storm like this, a dif­fer­ence of just a few de­grees can quickly change weather and road con­di­tions,” he warned.

The storm sys­tem, dubbed Win­ter Storm Ezekiel by The Weather Chan­nel, was caus­ing havoc in more than 30 states Sun­day. In the Mid­west, more than 700 flights were de­layed or can­celed Sun­day at air­ports in Chicago, Den­ver and Minneapoli­s alone. The num­ber ex­ceeded 2,000 on Satur­day.

“Heavy snow will con­tinue to plas­ter the up­per Mis­sis­sippi Val­ley and north­ern Great Lakes re­gion into Sun­day night,” Ac­cuWeather warned.

In some ar­eas, fog was a ma­jor cul­prit Sun­day.

“Al­low ex­tra time and use height­ened cau­tion,” the Na­tional Weather Ser­vice in Chicago tweeted.

“If en­coun­ter­ing dense fog slow down, use low beam head­lights, and keep ad­e­quate fol­low­ing dis­tance from the ve­hi­cle in front of you.”

Strong, gusty winds will ex­tend over much of the Plains and spread east of the Mis­sis­sippi River on Sun­day af­ter­noon and night, Ac­cuWeather said.

Some ar­eas could get up to 2 feet of snow, and iso­lated ar­eas near the Great Lakes could see 3 feet.

The city of Lead, South Dakota, was hit with 30 inches of snow and re­ported snow drifts in ex­cess of 5 feet.

Ar­eas around Du­luth, Min­nesota, had 20 inches as of 6 a.m. Sun­day. In Mid­land, Mich., the city re­ported nu­mer­ous trees and power lines down be­cause of ice – just four days af­ter a power out­age forced clo­sure of City Hall.

The West was not ex­empt. A front driv­ing heavy rains and high winds that rolled onto the Cal­i­for­nia coast cen­tered be­low San Fran­cisco was ex­pected to pound parts of the state with heavy rains and high winds for sev­eral days, and heavy snow was ex­pected in the moun­tains.

More than 1,000 flights were de­layed or can­celed into and out of San Fran­cisco on Satur­day and Sun­day.

APU GOMES/AFP VIA GETTY IMAGES

Snow blan­kets the San Bernardino For­est on Fri­day in Wright­wood, Calif. Moun­tain ar­eas were ex­pect­ing more snow.

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