Northeast gets its 2nd major workday snowstorm in a week
BOSTON (AP) Boston scrambled to dig out Monday from the second major winter storm in a week and delayed a celebratory Super Bowl parade, and forecasters from Philadelphia to Portland, Maine, warned that "flash freezing" could make roads dangerously slippery.
Officials said a Massachusetts woman was run over and killed by a snowplow, and New York state police said two people were killed in a multivehicle crash on an interstate in Rye. Here's the latest on the storm:
A DEADLY TOLL
Fifty-seven-year-old Cynthia Levine was struck and killed by a snowplow just before 10 a.m. Monday in the parking lot of a condominium complex in Weymouth, south of Boston, the Norfolk district attorney's office said.
In New York, state police said they were investigating a two-vehicle crash on Interstate 95 in Rye when a third vehicle lost control on the highway and hit the two vehicles from the first crash, killing two people. The cause was not immediately known, but the crash occurred as snow and freezing rain hindered travel throughout the region.
Officials in Ohio, where the storm hit before slamming into the Northeast, said a Toledo police officer died while shoveling snow in his driveway Sunday and the city's 70-year-old mayor was hospitalized after an accident that may have occurred while he was out checking road conditions.
The officer, who was not named, died of an apparent heart attack. Doctors say Mayor D. Michael Collins was heavily sedated and in critical condition Monday, a day after he went into cardiac arrest and his SUV crashed into a pole on his way home not long after a news conferece.
SNOWFALL AND WARNINGS
The snowstorm, which dumped more than 19 inches of snow on Chicago, deepened off the southern New England coast, bringing accumulations up to 18 inches to the greater Boston and up to a foot of slushy wintry mix to Hartford, Connecticut; Providence, Rhode Island; southern New Hampshire and Vermont places still reeling from the up to 3 feet they got last week.
"For New Englanders, we're used to this during the winter," said Matt Doody of the National Weather Service. But he cautioned that the evening commute would be messy.
More than 20 counties in New York state were under a winter storm warning, with up to 16 inches forecast for the eastern Catskill Mountains, and northern and central Taconics. Many Long Island schools delayed opening or closed due to a forecast of snow and freezing rain. By early afternoon, central Massachusetts had more than a foot.
The Philadelphia area received about an inch of snow before the precipitation changed to rain. Forecasters expected 3 to 5 inches to fall in the Lehigh Valley, and 5 to 11 inches in northern Pennsylvania. Parts of northern Ohio got at least a foot.
The National Weather Service issued a "flash freeze" warning for New York City and Long Island. Similar warnings were out for Philadelphia and up the coast to Maine as temperatures dropped, freezing roads already slick with snow and slush.
Rush-hour commuters in New York City were stranded on a packed subway train that lost power for 2 hours Monday before it could be towed to a station. Five other trains were stuck behind it.
Police on Long Island say a tractor-trailer flipped on its side around 11:30 a.m. Monday on the westbound Long Island Expressway near Dix Hills. Several other accidents were reported in the same area.
Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin urged motorists to drive carefully and watch for snow plows that can be obscured by blowing snow. His plea came amid reports that at least four Vermont Agency of Transportation plows were hit by vehicles while clearing snow.
In Henniker, New Hampshire, crews on Monday were cleaning up snow using plows lent by the state and surrounding towns. A fire had destroyed the town's plow fleet three days earlier.
PLOWING FOR THE PARADE
Boston Mayor Marty Walsh canceled school for a second day and urged drivers to stay off the roads so workers could clear snow for a downtown parade honoring the New England Patriots for their fourth Super Bowl win.
The parade had been set for Tuesday morning, but late Monday, Walsh announced that it would be postponed until 11 a.m. Wednesday to buy the city some time.
"We look forward to celebrating with Patriots fans during better weather on Wednesday," the mayor said in a statement.
DISORDER IN THE COURT
The storm delayed two of the nation's biggest court cases the murder trial of former New England Patriots star Aaron Hernandez and jury selection in the federal death penalty trial of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.
Testimony was to resume Tuesday in the Hernandez trial. But federal court officials in Boston, who follow the city's school closure schedule, said the Tsarnaev proceedings would be delayed a second day.
SOME REALLY DIG IT
Tony Troc looks on the bright side of shoveling snow: Hey, it's a pretty good workout.
"It doesn't bother me at all," the supermarket warehouse worker said after clearing another 8 inches of snow from his driveway in Whitman, 20 miles south of Boston. "If I didn't like it, I'd be in Florida."
Todd Penney of Tolland, Connecticut, said digging out is fun.
"I actually get some perverse pleasure in snowblowing, just like I get some perverse pleasure in mowing my lawn on the tractor," he said. "When you have the tools that make the job easier, it's kind of like this alone time, this me time. It's kind of Zen."
SIX MORE WEEKS OF WINTER?
The handlers of Pennsylvania's most famous groundhog, Punxsutawney Phil, said the furry rodent has forecast six more weeks of winter.
Members of the top hat-wearing Inner Circle announced the "prediction" Monday morning.
Legend has it that if Phil sees his shadow on Feb. 2, winter will last another six weeks. If not, spring comes early.
Associated Press writers Mark Pratt and Sylvia Lee Wingfield in Boston and Pat Eaton-Robb in Columbia, Connecticut, contributed to this report.