Millions remain in the path of a large-scale winter storm
A dangerous winter storm that’s walloped the upper Midwest pushed toward the Great Lakes and the Northeast on Saturday, bringing heavy snow, freezing rain and treacherous travel conditions for tens of millions.
More than a foot of snow was reported in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula by Saturday mid-afternoon, the National Weather Service said, and the storm is expected to continue through Sunday for New England.
The agency predicted 6 to 12 inches of snow for portions of Michigan to New England.
Farther south, a wintry mix hit parts of the Midwest and the northern Mid-Atlantic states. Washington, DC and Baltimore could see as much as an inch of snow and ice accumulation, while much of northeast Kansas saw light freezing rain and sleet, local NWS offices said.
At the storm’s back end, blizzard warnings were still in effect Saturday afternoon for parts of the Dakotas, Minnesota and Iowa, where the weather has created havoc on some roads since Friday.
In Minnesota, at least 230 vehicles spun off the road, and at least 218 crashes were reported throughout the state from Friday morning to Saturday morning, the Minnesota State Patrol said.
Authorities in those states urged would-be drivers to stay home — and terrifying video from western Iowa drove the point home.
While an Iowa state trooper was helping a delivery driver whose truck was in the snowy grass off Interstate 80 on Friday, a pickup truck slid off the highway. The pickup slammed into the delivery truck, narrowly missing the delivery driver, who scattered out of the way, video from the delivery vehicle showed.
The video was posted to Twitter by the Iowa State Patrol. No one was injured in the incident.
Timing and impacts through the day
Eastern cities like New York, Boston and Philadelphia were getting their share of mixed snow and ice on Saturday afternoon, with more expected into the night.
“This will be another tricky forecast for the big cities along the I-95 corridor,” CNN meteorologist Taylor Ward said.
“New York City and Boston will likely see 2 to 4 inches of snow before everything ends as rain Saturday night and early Sunday,” Ward said.
Areas farther inland have a better chance of remaining in the snow and will likely see slightly greater amounts.
Interior portions of the Northeast could see 8 to 12 inches for upstate New York and up to 6 inches in northern Maine.
Parts of the Ohio Valley could be left with a severe coating of ice. Up to a quarter-inch of ice could accumulate in places like Indianapolis, St. Louis, and Cleveland.
Washington, DC, could even get a little glazing of ice before changing over to rain.
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Expect significant travel headaches in the snow-impacted areas. Flights will be delayed or even canceled, so check with your airlines before traveling.
Airports in cities like Chicago, New York and Boston could be affected the most by Saturday’s weather. Incoming flights at John F. Kennedy International were late by an average of almost two and a half hours because of snow and ice Saturday evening, according to Flight Aware.
Road travel is treacherous as well, with windy conditions creating blowing snow and near-whiteout conditions in some of the hardest-hit areas across the Midwest.
Bitter cold will follow the storm
Behind the system, bitterly cold temperatures will settle in for the end of the weekend and start of the week.
“Much below average temperatures likely in this arctic air with temperatures as much as 20 degrees below average,” according to the weather service.
“After the storm moves out, the bitter cold will settle in. High temperatures in the region will remain in the single digits Sunday and into the early part of next week, while overnight temperatures will dip to 10 to 20 degrees below zero,” says Ward.
Minneapolis will drop below zero Sunday, Monday and Tuesday mornings. Temperatures will only make it into the single digits on Sunday. Chicago’s lows will be in the single digits Sunday through Tuesday morning, with highs in the teens and low 20s.
Windy conditions will make temperatures feel much colder.