US digs out after blizzard; 400,000 still powerless


New York: Over 400,000 homes and businesses shivered without power in northeast America and people began digging out as a monster blizzard drifted away leaving cities and towns buried under mounds of snow.

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At least nine deaths in three states and Canada are blamed on the snowstorm that began Friday and left parts of the region from Pennsylvania to Maine under as much as three feet of snow.

“There’s just really no place to put the snow,” Bostonian Allison Rice, trying to shovel away what she could, was quoted as saying by CNN Sunday.

The storm forced the cancellation of more than 5,000 flights, and knocked out power to more than 635,000 customers.

That figure fell to around 400,000 by Sunday morning, according to CNN.

Three of New York’s busiest airports resumed limited service Saturday, and flights are expected to resume Sunday at Boston’s Logan International Airport and Connecticut’s Bradley International Airport.

While the blizzard that pummelled northeastern states has wandered out over the Atlantic Ocean, the weatherman forecast that a major winter storm will bring heavy snow and strong winds from northeast Colorado to central Minnesota in northern Midwest from Sunday into Monday.

Eastern South Dakota could see more than a foot of snow and 50 miles per hour (80 km per hour) winds, “creating whiteout conditions”, the National Weather Service said.

In Boston, capital of Massachusetts, Governor Deval Patrick said the emphasis of the snow storm response is gradually shifting from snow removal to restoring power, Boston Herald reported.

As much as 31 inches fell in some regions with Jamaica Plain in Boston getting 25.5 inches and Logan International Airport just under 22 inches.

The all-time record for the city is 27.3 inches, set in 2003.

In the face of the massive blizzard, a team of first responders delivered a baby girl at 3 a.m., the Herald said citing National Guard officials.

The baby girl was born at the worst of the storm at her home on Vernon Hill in Worcester.

Across the state, officials were reporting high-popping powder totals.

Spencer topped the state with 31 inches followed by Framingham with 30.5 inches and Northboro with 29.5 inches, according to the weather service.

Hundreds of cars were stranded on the Long Island expressway in New York after motorists got stuck driving in the snow.

They outnumbered the tow trucks and crews deployed to the area for the storm, according to Suffolk County police.