Late last night, nearly 90,000 homes were without power in Washington State alone, alongside 100,000 more in the Midwest and South. There have been more than 4,000 flights cancelled or delayed nationwide – including 1,000 departures and arrivals from New York’s Kennedy and La Guardia airports. According to the National Weather Service (NWS), a much as a foot and a half of snow has fallen across areas of Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan.
Newark International Airport reported that inbound flights were facing delays at departure cities by as much as four hours.
AccuWeather meteorologist Alex Sosnowski warned: “The worst of the storm is forecast to focus on central and northern California, with a heightened threat of flooding, mudslides, erosion, power outages, avalanches and road-closing snowfall in the mountains.”
Commuters have been affected by ice-rink like roads, with drivers being warned to take caution on snow covered roads.
According to AccuWeather meteorologist Tyler Roys, this winter storm is a “unique” one.
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The weather expert told USA Today: ”This storm is unique in that it brought a significant storm to Seattle and a wintry mess to so many big cities – Chicago, Detroit, New York and Boston.
“When you include the South, the storm is impacting almost every part of the United States in some shape or form.”
Areas of New Jersey are bracing for up to 8 inches of snow and ice, with Governor Phil Murphy declaring a state of emergency for the whole state.
Schools in Seattle have so far been closed for two days, and Tuesday saw a mix of rain and snow cover the region.
Seattle has been blanketed by three times the amount the average snow it sees in a year, 20.2 inches.
The Seattle Weather Service tweeted: “Here’s another statistic that sets this month apart, including ALL months going back to 1894, there have been only been five months (including this one) in which six plus inch snowfall occurred twice in the same month.”
Now the Weather Service is warning residents to brace for landslides saying: “With the recent rains and snow melt, the threat for #landslides has increased for the lowlands below 1,000 feet for Tuesday through Friday.”
Even Hawaii has experienced the impact of winter storms, with sixty-foot waves and wind gusts up to 191 mph recorded across the weekend.
Sam Lemmo, administrator for Hawaii’s Office of Conservation and Coastal Lands said: “The forecasters were calling this an unprecedented event and we concur.
“We rarely if ever have seen the combination of record high on-shore waves, coupled with gale-force winds.”
Wintry weather will continue to travel north and east into the middle of the week, and some areas of the Great Lakes into New England will be covered by at least 6-12inches of snow.
To the south of that heavy snow area, there is the potential of freezing rain, with up to a quarter inch of ice in places.