ARLINGTON, Virginia – A powerful winter storm that hammered the West last week roared into the East on Sunday, with blizzard conditions and up to two feet of snow possible for some areas.
Almost 80 million people were under winter storm warnings and watches. The snow started before dawn in Washington, D.C., and was slowly rolling north. All was quiet in New York City, but snow expected to start later Sunday was not forecast to stop until about a foot had fallen.
"Another storm system is set to impact New York with potentially heavy snow, strong winds and possibly coastal flooding downstate," Gov. Andrew Cuomo warned. "I am urging all New Yorkers to pay close attention to their local forecasts and to begin preparing their households for this latest round of winter weather."
Cuomo directed state agencies to prepare for the worst and to be ready to assist local governments that could be overwhelmed in coming days. He said utility companies would be monitored to "ensure any power outages are addressed immediately."
Winter storm warnings were in effect Sunday from North Carolina to Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Winter storm watches remained in place for other parts of the Northeast and New England, including Boston.
Major eastern cities including Washington, D.C., Baltimore, Philadelphia, and New York City were bracing for the biggest snowfall of the season, Accuweather warned. Washington hasn't had a major snowstorm in almost two years but could see five inches of snow before a mixture of ice, sleet and freezing rain caps off the storm.
The storm has kept its fury since sweeping through much of the West almost a week ago, slamming California with heavy rains and the mountains with feet of snow. That system had moved across the country and was delivering a shot of winter weather across the Midwest Saturday into Sunday.
As the storm fully emerges across the Ohio Valley, AccuWeather forecasters expect it to interact with a developing low forming off the Atlantic coast and erupt into a full-blown nor’easter.
"This can allow for snowfall totals to really build up over large areas of the Northeast," AccuWeather Meteorologist Brett Rossio said.