East Coast Storm Brings Snow and Disruptions to the New York Region

Written by | January 22, 2014 | 0

New Yorkers are used to a lot of overheated discussion about impending snow.

Storms get silly names, meteorological phenomena are dissected, and the airwaves are saturated with stories of people running out to buy shovels and salt.

But the winter storm that swept up the East Coast on Tuesday, just after the long weekend for Martin Luther King’s Birthday, seemed to catch many by surprise, both for its timing and intensity.

“I didn’t expect this at all,” said Mary Catherine Hughes, 22, who was standing near a subway entrance at Union Square holding an umbrella that was all but useless as wind whipped around her. “It’s horrible. Snow is cute for only a little bit.”

The storm, which was expected to dump up to 14 inches of snow on the city by Wednesday morning, grounded thousands of flights in the region and made the commute home treacherous, and several times longer, for millions of workers.

At a news conference on Tuesday evening, Mayor Bill de Blasio said the storm had intensified since initial forecasts.

“People should stay home to the maximum extent possible,” he said.

The mayor urged residents to avoid driving, in part to keep roads clear for workers. City officials said workers had been slow in plowing streets because the storm gathered strength just as people were leaving work.

Filed in: International

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