50 million people under winter storm watches, advisories as ‘bomb cyclone’ storm hits Northeast

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A winter storm that brought havoc to the Midwest over the Thanksgiving weekend was rolling through the Northeast on Monday, dumping more than a foot of snow in some areas seeing their first measurable snowfall of the season.

More than 50 million people remained under winter storm advisories or warnings a week after the historic storm first smashed onto the Pacific Coast as a bomb cyclone.

Up to a foot of snow was forecast from northeastern Pennsylvania to central Massachusetts and southern New Hampshire before ending late Monday, AccuWeather said. Some areas of the Catskills, Berkshires and the mountains in southern Vermont and New Hampshire could see up to 30 inches.

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Boston, New York City and Philadelphia and their vast suburbs were under a winter weather advisory.

“An accumulation of a coating to an inch or so is possible around Philadelphia,” said AccuWeather senior meteorologist Alex Sosnowski. “Up to a few inches may fall on the New York City area with several inches likely around Boston.”

a close up of a map: SOURCE AccuWeather, as of Dec. 2
© USA TODAY SOURCE AccuWeather, as of Dec. 2

Much heavier snow is likely in the northern and western suburbs of New York City and Boston, he said.

The storm, dubbed Winter Storm Ezekiel by The Weather Channel, began its march across the nation Tuesday when it slammed across southern Oregon and northwestern California with 100-mph wind gusts along the coast and multiple feet of snow in the mountains. 

Bomb cyclones hitting the West Coast are rare, drawing weather service warnings that the storm could rival some of the most intense storms on record for that part of the country. 

The storm then swept west over the next four days, driving heavy snow and strong winds to a vast portion of the Upper Midwest and the Plains. The storm began pummeling the Northeast as snow, freezing rain and sleet on Sunday. 

In Buffalo, a Delta Connection flight from New York slid off a taxiway, Sunday morning, Delta Air Lines confirmed to USA TODAY. None of the 64 passengers aboard the Endeavor Air CRJ-900 were injured, the airline said.

The storm story was not over in the West, however. 

In the mountains northeast of Los Angeles, nearly 9,000 customers lost power Sunday due to heavy snowfall, Southern California Edison said. 

The front, driving heavy rains and high winds after rolling onto the California coast below San Francisco, could pound areas of the state for several days, the National Weather Service said. More than 1,000 flights were delayed or canceled into and out of San Francisco on Saturday and Sunday.

But there were some victories. The weather service canceled high wind advisories for San Francisco early Monday. And the area of Sonoma County where the Kincade Fire burned more than 120 square miles and hundreds of homes a month ago appeared to be spared from major mudslides.

“The Flash Flood Watch for the #KincadeFire burn scar was allowed to expire at 3 AM (Monday)” the National Weather Service in San Francisco tweeted Sunday night. “Heavy rain rates are no longer expected over the burn scar.”

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: 50 million people under winter storm watches, advisories as ‘bomb cyclone’ storm hits Northeast