Northeast tries to dig out, power up after latest storm


HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Residents in the Northeast dug out from as much as 2 feet of wet, heavy snow Thursday, while utilities dealt with downed trees and power lines that snarled traffic and left hundreds of thousands of homes and businesses in the dark after two strong nor'easters – all with the possibility of another storm headed to the area.

With many schools closed for a second day, forecasters tracked the possibility of another late-season snowstorm to run up the coast early next week.

"The strength of it and how close it comes to the coast will make all the difference. At this point it's too early to say," said Jim Nodchey, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Massachusetts. "We're just looking at a chance."

At least two deaths were blamed on the storm.

Snow still was falling tonight in places including Vermont, where storm warnings were in effect.

More than 800,000 customers were without power in the Northeast, including some who have been without electricity since last Friday's destructive nor'easter. Thousands of flights across the region were canceled, and traveling on the ground was treacherous.

A train carrying more than 100 passengers derailed in Wilmington, Mass., after a fallen tree branch got wedged in a rail switch. Nobody was hurt. Tory Mazzola, a spokesman for Keolis Commuter Services, which runs the system for the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, said the low-speed derailment remains under investigation.

In New Hampshire, Interstate 95 in Portsmouth was closed in both directions because of downed power lines, leaving traffic at a standstill for hours.

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