The weary northeast United States prepared for yet more snow Sunday, as the first day of March — with the coming of spring now less than three weeks away — bringing no relief from what has already been a grueling winter. The predicted Sunday storm is only the first of the week, with another wintry bombardment expected on Tuesday.
The first day of spring, at least on the calendar, is March 20 — but February’s record cold will likely be followed by more freezing temperatures throughout March in the northeast.
With snow expected to begin Sunday night in northeast areas ranging from Pennsylvania up through the New England states, the storm was already wreaking havoc Saturday when it swept through north Texas, slashing the Dallas-Forth Worth area with cold and freezing rain.
More than 1,000 flights were canceled Saturday at Dallas/Forth Worth International Airport, with 200 more and counting getting the axe by 8:30 a.m. Sunday morning local time, according to the flight tracking site Flight Aware, leaving travelers frustrated and scrambling to get home.
“We were stuck on the tarmac for three hours. Told we had to get the plane de-iced,” one traveler, Katie Kacarab, told a local TV station. “We were in line, getting ready to do it — it was going to take 20 minutes. We became plane No. 7, plane No. 10.”
And then passengers on her plane were told to get off the aircraft and resume waiting in the terminal, where they sat for another four hours.
But by Sunday evening, the same winter storm will bring both snow and icy road conditions to the northeast, with the AccuWeather service warning of “a real mess” for the Monday morning commute in regions ranging from Cleveland, Ohio, through Buffalo and Albany, New York, all the way east to Boston, Massachusetts, and Portland, Maine.
“People should expect another round of slippery roads and airline delays with possible cancellations and disruptions to daily activities,” wrote AccuWeather forecaster Alex Sosnowski. “The greatest amount of snow and wintry mix will focus from the I-80 corridor northward in the mid-Atlantic and across much of New England.”
But even the expected clearing of the storm — which threatens to break Boston’s all-time record for snowfall in a single winter with another five inches coming down — on Monday will not bring relief to the weary northeast region.
A second storm is predicted to sweep the area starting on Tuesday — though the second storm may bring less snow and more freezing rain and icy road conditions and even flooding to some areas of the northeast.
[Image: Darren McCollester/Getty Images]