Northeast grapples with icy roads as storm blows out to sea

Feb 3, 2022, 6:44 AM | Updated: Feb 5, 2022, 12:16 pm
Ric and Annalisa Potts walk their dog, Happy, under a fallen tree on Thursday, Feb. 3, 2022 in Memp...

Ric and Annalisa Potts walk their dog, Happy, under a fallen tree on Thursday, Feb. 3, 2022 in Memphis, Tenn. A major winter storm that already cut electric power to about 350,000 homes and businesses from Texas to the Ohio Valley was set to leave Pennsylvania and New England glazed in ice and smothered in snow.(Patrick Lantrip/Daily Memphian via AP)

(Patrick Lantrip/Daily Memphian via AP)

Northeast residents were urged to stay off the roads with temperatures beginning to drop Friday evening as a major winter storm turned already slippery roads and sidewalks into ice-covered hazards.

The storm spread misery from the Deep South, where tree limbs snapped and a tornado claimed a life, to the nation’s northeastern tip where snow and ice made travel treacherous Friday.

Massachusetts State Police responded to more than 200 crashes with property damage or injuries, including one fatal crash, starting Thursday evening, officials said. New Hampshire State Police reported at least 70 crashes Friday morning.

“This number is most definitely low because reports are still being written and entered,” state police in Massachusetts tweeted.

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul warned residents as the snow blows out to sea late Friday and Saturday to stay home if possible to avoid ice-coated roadways and the threat of falling tree limbs in the Hudson Valley and Capital regions.

“We’re not out of the danger zone yet,” Hochul said. “The weather is wildly unpredictable.”

More than a foot (30 centimeters) of snow fell in parts of Pennsylvania, New York and New England. Utility crews were making progress in an area stretching from Texas to Ohio after about 350,000 homes and businesses were in the dark at one point.

One of the hardest-hit places was Memphis, where more than 100,000 customers remained without power Friday night in Shelby County alone, according to poweroutage.us, which tracks utility reports.

Memphis resident Michael LaRosa described cracking and banging as the tree limbs fell, and the dull hum and pop of transformers blowing out in his tree-lined Midtown neighborhood. A fire started at the end of his street, caused by a live wire on Thursday.

“It was pretty surreal for a little while,” LaRosa, a professor at Rhodes College and a book editor, said Friday. “There were people walking in the streets, and I was worried that limbs were going to fall on them. The neighborhood sort of collapsed pretty quickly and pretty spectacularly.”

Crews worked to remove trees and downed power lines from city streets, while those who lost electricity spent a cold night at home, or sought refuge at hotels or homes of friends and family. Utility officials said it could take days for power to be restored.

It’s also going to take days to clear 225 downed trees on city streets, and crews were working 16-hour shifts to get it done, Robert Knecht, Memphis’ public works director, said Thursday night.

In Oklahoma, police in the Tulsa suburb of Broken Arrow said they were investigating a hit-and-run crash that killed a 12-year-old boy who was struck while sledding.

Tragedy also struck western Alabama, where a tornado on Thursday killed one person and critically injured three others, Hale County Emergency Management Director Russell Weeden told local news outlets.

The storm represented a “highly energized system” with waves of low pressure riding along like a train from Texas, where there was snowfall and subfreezing temperatures, to Maine and the Canadian Maritimes, said Hunter Tubbs, meteorologist from the National Weather Service in Maine.

Airlines scrubbed about 3,400 flights by midday Friday, with the highest numbers of cancellations at Dallas-Fort Worth and airports in the New York City area and Boston, according to tracking service FlightAware.

Slippery roads caused scores of vehicles to slide off roads, even before anticipated deteriorating conditions during the evening rush hour.

In Tennessee, a man was killed when his truck crashed into a tree that had fallen on a highway, causing the vehicle to spin into a ditch Thursday night in Haywood County, the highway patrol said.

In the Pittsburgh area, commuter rail service was halted when a power line went down, trapping cars at a Port Authority of Allegheny County rail yard.

In New York’s Hudson Valley, the Catskill Animal Sanctuary was relying on generators for power Friday after the overnight ice storm.

“We had trees down all over the property and trees down on our road,” said Kathy Stevens, founder of the refuge for rescued farm animals.

But the roughly 250 animals in Saugerties were OK, she said. Large animals took shelter in barns and smaller animals were taken to offices, the infirmary and other places to keep safe from falling trees.

In Texas, the return of subfreezing weather brought heightened anxiety nearly a year after February 2021’s catastrophic freeze that buckled the state’s power grid for days, leading to hundreds of deaths in one of the worst blackouts in U.S. history.

But Gov. Greg Abbott said Thursday’s power outages were due to high winds or downed power lines, not grid failures. About 13,000 homes and businesses in Texas remained without power Friday afternoon.

In New England, some places welcomed the winter weather, which was a boon for skiers and snowmobilers.

In Vermont, no one was complaining at the Stowe Mountain Resort where skiers and snowboarders reported some of the best conditions of the season, with more than 10 inches (25 centimeters) of snow overnight, and snow continuing to fall.

“We’re just having a blast, the sauce is flowing,” said Jared Marshall, of Denmark, Maine, a member of the ski team of New Hampshire’s Colby Sawyer College in town for a ski meet.

___

Sharp reported from Portland, Maine; Foody reported from Chicago; and Bleed reported from Little Rock, Arkansas. Associated Press writers Adrian Sainz in Memphis, Tennessee; Wilson Ring in Stowe, Vermont; Marina Villeneuve and Michael Hill in Albany, New York; Ken Miller in Oklahoma City; Paul J. Weber in Austin, Texas; David Koenig, Jake Bleiberg and Terry Wallace in Dallas; Paul Davenport in Albuquerque, New Mexico; Seth Borenstein in Kensington, Maryland; Rick Callahan in Indianapolis and Jay Reeves in Alabaster, Alabama, contributed to this report.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Britain's Prime Minister Liz Truss arrives to attend the Conservative Party conference at the ICC, ...
Associated Press

UK’s Truss sticks by economic plan as her party worries

LONDON (AP) — British Prime Minister Liz Truss said Sunday that she could have done a better job “laying the ground” for her package of unfunded tax cuts, but insisted she would push on with an economic plan that has caused turmoil on financial markets and weakened the country’s public finances. Truss acknowledged that the […]
1 day ago
Latvian Prime Minister and Head of board of leading political party Jauna Vienotiba (New Unity) Kri...
Associated Press

Latvian premier’s party emerges on top in general election

HELSINKI (AP) — Prime Minister Krisjanis Karins’ ruling center-right party won the most votes in Latvia’s general election, centrist parties were runners-up and pro-Moscow parties crashed in a vote that was shaped by neighboring Russia’s war in Ukraine and divisions among the Baltic country’s sizable ethnic Russian minority. With more than 97% of the votes […]
1 day ago
Ukrainian servicemen drive a tank on the way to Siversk, Donetsk region, Ukraine, Saturday, Oct. 1,...
Associated Press

Ukraine presses counteroffensive after Russian setback

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Russia attacked the Ukrainian president’s hometown with suicide drones on Sunday, and Ukraine pushed ahead with its counteroffensive after taking back control of a strategic eastern city. Russia’s loss of Lyman, which it had been using as a transport and logistics hub, is a new blow to the Kremlin as it […]
1 day ago
Police cars wrecked in soccer riots are seen on the pitch at Kanjuruhan Stadium in Malang, East Jav...
Associated Press

EXPLAINER: What’s behind Indonesia’s deadly soccer match?

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — Violence and a deadly stampede that erupted following a domestic league soccer match Saturday night marked another tragedy in Indonesian football. Here’s a look at how the chaos occurred and what is being done to prevent future incidents. ___ HOW DID THE CHAOS OCCUR? Chaos broke out after Persebaya Surabaya defeated […]
1 day ago
Associated Press

Military: Gunmen kill Pakistani UN peacekeeper in east Congo

ISLAMABAD (AP) — A Pakistani soldier serving as a U.N. peacekeeper in the Democratic Republic of Congo was killed in a militant attack in the country’s volatile east, the military said. A group of six militants reached the United Nations’ permanent operation base in the district of Minembwe, ostensibly to surrender their weapons as part […]
1 day ago
Buddhist monks perform rituals during the funeral of famed American extreme skier Hilaree Nelson in...
Associated Press

Famed US extreme skier gets traditional Nepalese funeral

KATHMANDU, Nepal (AP) — A famed extreme skier from the United States who was killed after falling from one of the world’s tallest mountains was on Sunday given a traditional funeral at a Sherpa cremation ground as Buddhist monks officiated over a ceremony attended by family, friends and government officials. Hilaree Nelson, 49, fell off […]
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Work at Zum Services...

Seattle Public Schools announces three-year contract with Zum

Seattle Public Schools just announced a three-year contract with a brand-new company to the Pacific Northwest to assist with their student transportation: Zum.
Swedish Cyberknife 900x506...

June is Men’s Health Month: Here’s Why It’s Important To Speak About Your Health

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, men in the United States, on average, die five years earlier than women.
...

Anacortes – A Must Visit Summertime Destination

While Anacortes is certainly on the way to the San Juan Islands (SJI), it is not just a destination to get to the ferry… Anacortes is a destination in and of itself!
...

Ready for your 2022 Alaskan Adventure with Celebrity Cruises?

Celebrity Cruises SPONSORED — A round-trip Alaska cruise from Seattle is an amazing treat for you and a loved one. Not only are you able to see and explore some of the most incredible and visually appealing natural sights on the planet, but you’re also able to relax and re-energize while aboard a luxury cruise […]
Northeast grapples with icy roads as storm blows out to sea