East Coast Will Be Digging Out for Days

At least 30 deaths blamed on 'Snowzilla'
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jan 25, 2016 5:22 AM CST
Updated Jan 25, 2016 6:31 AM CST
East Coast Will Be Digging Out for Days
A plow clears snow in Brooklyn on Sunday.   (AP Photo/Peter Morgan)

East Coast residents who made the most of a paralyzing weekend blizzard face fresh challenges as the workweek begins: slippery roads, spotty transit service, and mounds of snow that buried cars and blocked sidewalk entrances. For many, the weekend extends into Monday because of closed schools and government offices. Officials were cautioning against unnecessary driving even as they expected some commuter trains to be delayed or canceled. The storm dropped snow from the Gulf Coast to New England, with near-record snowfalls tallied from Washington, DC, to New York City. At least 30 deaths were blamed on the weather, with shoveling snow and breathing carbon monoxide together claiming almost as many lives as car crashes. More on the "Snowzilla" aftermath:

  • Federal offices will be closed Monday, and Virginia's state workers were told to stay home. Schools from Washington to the Jersey Shore gave students Monday off.

  • New York's transit authority says almost all mass transit services will be running in time for the Monday morning rush hour, including nearly 80% of the Long Island Rail Road.
  • In Washington, DC, authorities warn that it could be days before some streets are cleared, the Washington Post reports. Police Chief Cathy L. Lanier says drivers who venture out and get stuck will be fined $750—and people may also be fined for walking in the streets.
  • The House has declared a snow week and won't start voting again until Feb. 1, while the Senate will be back on Wednesday, reports the Hill.
  • Nearly 12,000 flights were canceled over the weekend, and major airlines canceled hundreds more flights for Monday. Along with clearing snow and ice from facilities and equipment, the operators of airlines, trains, and transit systems had to figure out how to get snowbound employees to work.
  • Congressional leaders say they were saddened to learn of the blizzard-related death of Capitol Police Officer Vernon Alston, Politico reports. The 44-year-old, who had been on the force for 20 years, died of a heart attack after collapsing at his Delaware home on Saturday.
  • Saturday's 26.6 inches of snow in New York City set a single-day record, though in Washington, the records were less clear: The Post reports that the official total recorded at Reagan National Airport is inaccurate because the snow-measuring device ended up getting buried in snow.
(Read more blizzard stories.)

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