A blustery nor’easter that dumped over 2 feet of gloppy snow across pockets of the Northeast has left more than 1 million utility customers from Maryland to Maine without power.
Massachusetts had the most residents in the dark, with electricity cut to more than 304,000 customers as of Thursday morning. New Jersey was the second hardest hit, with more than 229,000 customers powerless.
Meanwhile, commuters were facing delays, hundreds of flights were still grounded, and communities were enduring yet another tedious and dangerous cleanup as the snow brought down trees and power lines.
It was déjà vu for the same region across the I-95 corridor that was hit last Friday by a deadly nor’easter — one that cut the lights to more than 2 million from Virginia to Maine.
The nor’easter on Wednesday brought a wide range of snowfall across the mid-Atlantic and Northeast, from just a few inches in parts of Delaware and Maryland to over 2 feet in New York, New Jersey and Massachusetts.
New York City’s Central Park was hit with less than 3 inches of snow, but the rain mix fell like confetti, blanketing streets and sidewalks with a thick sludge.
Witnesses also reported lightning and peals of thunder across the region during the snowstorm — a rare phenomenon called “thundersnow.” At its peak, the nor’easter was projected to have snowfall rates of up to 3 inches an hour.
The town of Sloatsburg, New York, in Rockland County, recorded 26 inches of snow in the 24 hours through 8:30 p.m. ET, according to the National Weather Service.
Philadelphia International Airport recorded about 6 inches of snow.
The women’s basketball team at Northeastern University got an unplanned workout Wednesday when its bus got stuck in the snow in Philadelphia, where the Colonial Athletic Association championship tournament is taking place.
A school spokesperson told NBC Boston that the bus stalled a few blocks from the team’s hotel after practice — so the players got out and pushed it back on course.
“They raced off the bus to help push, got it moving a couple of feet and around the bend, off the hill,” the spokesperson said.
Reinforced by a cold front moving offshore to the Atlantic, the storm was expected to intensify into Thursday morning as it moved north through New England.
But a cascade of cancellations and delays was already being felt as the brunt of the storm rolled through the Northeast.
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SOURCE: NBC News, Ethan Sacks and Elizabeth Chuck and Alex Johnson and Erik Ortiz