Ferocious winter storm hits Northeast

System that pummeled U.S. for days blamed for deaths.

Sun, 01 Dec 2019 19:31:27 GMT

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NEW YORK — A deadly winter storm that has been tormenting travelers across the United States since before Thanksgiving moved to the Northeast on Sunday, packing one last punch of snow and ice as people made their way home after the holiday weekend.

The National Weather Service predicted more than a foot of snow in swaths of upstate New York and New England, as well as ice accumulations in parts of Pennsylvania.

“We’ve got our shovels ready. We’ve got the snowblower ready. We’re prepared,” said Paul Newman of Wethersfield, Conn.

The same storm has been pummeling the nation for days as it moves cross country, dumping heavy snow from parts of California to the northern Midwest and inundating other areas with rain.

It has been blamed for several deaths.

The bodies of a boy and a girl, both 5, were found in central Arizona after their vehicle was swept away Friday while crossing a swollen creek.

Two adults and four other children were rescued by helicopter, but a 6-year-old girl is still missing. Rescuers are combing the area of Tonto Basin, about 50 miles northeast of Phoenix, with helicopters, drones, boats, and dogs.

“We want to bring her home safely to her family,” said Lt. Virgil Dodd of the Gila County Sheriff’s Office. “She needs to come home today, and we’re going to do that.”

Two boys, ages 5 and 8, died Saturday near Patton, Mo., when the vehicle they were riding in was swept off flooded roads.

A 48-year-old man died in a separate incident near Sedgewickville, Mo., and a storm-related death was reported in South Dakota.

Major highways reopened Sunday in Wyoming and Colorado, a day after blizzard conditions clogged roads with snow drifts. Road crews reopened all of I-25 and most of I-80 in Wyoming early Sunday after strong winds abated. Major interstates in Colorado were also reopened.

The city of Duluth, Minn., was blanketed with 21.7 inches of snow Sunday. City officials said streets were impassible and residents should stay inside.

As the storm shifts east, flight delays and cancellations are continuing to pile up — disrupting travelers heading home after Thanksgiving.

More than 500 of the nation’s flights were canceled on Sunday, compared with about 400 on Saturday, according to flight tracking site FlightAware.

In the mountain communities northeast of Los Angeles, nearly 9,000 utility customers were without power because of the storm.

Forecasters said a new storm is expected to bring several feet of mountain snow, rain, and gusty winds to California through the weekend. Another system is forecast to develop in the midatlantic Sunday, moving into a nor’easter by Monday.

As Sunday’s storm approached, hardy New Englanders made sure to be prepared, even if they weren’t really that worried.

Some communities, including Waterbury, Conn. have instituted parking bans.