Tens of thousands of people woke up without power on Saturday after a severe winter storm battered huge parts of the country, from the deep south to the country’s northeastern tip.
Up to 17 inches of snow and ice blanketed parts of New York State, Vermont, Indiana and Maine early Saturday, the National Weather Service said in a tweet.
A separate bulletin warned that “bitterly cold temperatures will span an area from the Southern Plains to the Ohio Valley and Northeast” on Saturday.
Some 87,444 homes were still without power in Tennessee as of early Saturday, while in New York state nearly 56,000 woke up in the dark, according to the tracking site power failure.us.
Parts of Michigan, Minnesota, New York and North Dakota were placed under winter warnings through the weekend, the NWS said. But things would start to warm up by Sunday, he added.
New York Gov. Kathy Hochul dispatched 24 National Guard members to assist in recovery efforts in Ulster County “as a severe winter storm continues to batter the Mid-Hudson region with heavy ice and snow,” her office said in a news release Friday.
“The state will deploy additional funds to support recovery operations for as long as needed,” Hochul said.
She previously warned residents to stay home if possible to avoid ice-covered roads and the danger of falling tree branches in the Hudson Valley and Capital regions, according to the Associated Press.
“We’re not out of danger yet,” she said. “The weather is absolutely unpredictable.”
When the roads got slippery, there were hundreds of car accidents.
“Patrols went from one crash to the next,” the Massachusetts State Police tweeted on Friday, adding that one person had died.
Officials have responded to at least 200 accidents since Thursday, the force said. “This number is definitely low because reports are still being written and entered,” she added.
New Hampshire state police reported 72 accidents as of Friday morning, while Maine authorities reported at least 10. An accident in Memphis resulted in a pile-up involving 15 vehicles.
New York Gov. Kathy Hochul warned residents to stay home if possible to avoid ice-covered roads and the risk of falling branches in the Hudson Valley and Capital regions as snow blows into the sea late Friday and Saturday, according to the Associated Press .
“We’re not out of the danger zone yet,” Hochul said. “The weather is absolutely unpredictable.”
Further south, cleanup efforts continued after a tornado that swept through Tennessee on Thursday. Robert Knecht, Memphis public works director, said Thursday night that 225 trees had been felled on city streets.
They were in the minority, but the heavy snowfall was welcomed by some. Skiers and snowboarders in Vermont enjoyed some of the best conditions of the season.
“We’re just having fun, the sauce is flowing,” one told the AP.
Associated Press contributed.