100 million people affected by East Coast’s deep freeze
About 100 million people faced a new challenge after the whopping East Coast snowstorm: a gusty deep freeze, topped Saturday by a wind chill close to minus 100 on New Hampshire’s Mount Washington that vied for world’s coldest place.
Jaw-clenching temperatures to start the weekend throughout the Northeast hit Burlington, Vt., at minus 1 and a wind chill of minus 30. Both Philadelphia and New York were shivering at 8 degrees.
And in Hartford, Conn., a brutal cold of 10 degrees yielded a wind chill of minus 20.
On Saturday, winds of more than 90 mph swirled Mount Washington, the Northeast’s highest peak, at a temperature of minus 37 degrees and a wind chill of minus 93. It tied for second place with Armstrong, Ontario, as the coldest spot in the world.
Boston, at a relatively balmy 11 degrees, was wrangling with a different kind of challenge: a shortage of plumbers as the weather wreaked havoc on pipes that froze and cracked, Democratic Mayor Marty Walsh reported.
A 3-foot tidal surge brought on by the nor’easter along the Massachusetts coast was the highest recorded in nearly a century. Residents of Boston and its suburbs were cleaning up Saturday after the tide that came in Thursday, flooding streets and forcing some residents to be evacuated as the water started to freeze.
In New Jersey, many people stayed home instead of dealing with single-digit temperatures. Others were cleaning up from the storm that dropped more than a foot of snow in some spots earlier in the week.
“My car felt like an icebox this morning, even though I had the heat on full blast,” Julie Williams said as she sipped coffee inside a Jackson Township convenience store. She was headed to work at a local supermarket, and was expecting it to be packed.
“People think it’s nuts before a storm happens, with everyone getting milk, bread, etc.” she said, adding with a laugh, “but it’s even worse in the days afterward, because they do the same thing but they’re a little crazy from cabin fever.”
The operators of New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport were struggling to recoup from Thursday’s storm.
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which runs the airport, said it was working with airlines and the Federal Aviation Administration to limit flights into Kennedy on Saturday “until there are adequate gates available to handle the backlog of flights due to recovery of flight schedules in the wake of Thursday’s storm.”