U.S.

Winter storm halts travel; more snow forecast for Northeast

Harsh weather causes thousands of flight cancellations, power outages around US

More snow is expected in the northeast late Monday, creating havoc for travelers.

Another round of heavy snow will create treacherous travel conditions late Monday night and Tuesday across the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast.  

From Baltimore to Washington, D.C., particularly along I-95, 3 to 5 inches of fresh snow will make the morning commute dangerous.

Flights departing or arriving at the Baltimore Washington International Airport, Reagan National Airport and the Washington Dulles International Airport are likely to experience delays and cancellations. 

More than half of the nation's flight cancellations on Monday were at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, dominated by American Airlines. About 650 travelers were stranded there Sunday night.

Nationally, there have been more than 6,100 flight cancellations since Saturday, according to FlightStats.com, including more than 2,800 by American Airlines or its American Eagle regional airline. American Airlines emerged from bankruptcy protection and merged with US Airways on Monday.

The snow and bitter cold brought traffic to a standstill and prompted another 1,600 U.S. flight cancellations on Monday, while tens of thousands of people were still without power as a result of the storm.

Trucks, trailers, and cars litter southbound lane of Interstate 81 at Salem Ave. Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013.
Trucks, trailers, and cars litter southbound lane of Interstate 81 at Salem Ave. Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013.
Kevin G. Gilbert/The Herald-Mail/AP

The storm dumped snow through the Mid-Atlantic region. Freezing rain prompted the federal government to allow workers to arrive up to two hours later than normal Monday or take unscheduled leave.

Power outages were reported in Virginia, parts of West Virginia, Maryland and the metropolitan Washington, D.C., area following freezing rain, wet snow and sleet. More than 15,000 customers in Maryland were without power, where the weight of the ice weakened tree limbs, which damaged power lines and other electrical equipment. Some 109,000 customers were without power in Virginia.

The precipitation will likely begin as sleet, especially south of interstate 66 in Virginia, the District of Columbia and U.S. Route 50 in Maryland. 

Conditions will start to deteriorate late Monday evening along I-81 from Hagerstown, Maryland to Harrisonburg, Virginia and also along I-95 from Baltimore to Washington.

That area could accrue an additional 3 to 5 inches of snow on top of what they received Sunday. On Sunday, 9.5 inches fell in northeast MD and 8.5 inches fell close to Westminster, Md. 

Commuters need to be mindful during the Tuesday morning rush hour as 1 to 2 inches of snow is possible per hour from daybreak to late morning.

On Monday below-zero temperatures crowned the top of the U.S. from Idaho to Minnesota, where many roads still had an inch-thick plate of ice, polished smooth by traffic and impervious to ice-melting chemicals, making driving much more dangerous.

Three to 5 inches of fresh snow is also possible across south western Pennsylvania in areas just south of Pittsburgh, particularly along I-70 from North Belle, Pa. to Wheeling, OH. 

In Philadelphia, 2 to 4 inches of snow is possible Tuesday. Sunday, 8.5 inches fell at the Philadelphia International Airport. New York City will receive anywhere from 1 to 3 inches of snow. 

Follow @ajamweather for the latest updates on the storm. 

With The Associated Press

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