A storm packing heavy winds hit the U.S. East Coast from Maine to Virginia on Friday (March 2), snarling travel in New York.
More than 1 million homes and businesses were without power in the Northeast and Midwest, more than 2,600 U.S. flights were canceled and the control tower at Dulles International Airport outside Washington was briefly evacuated due to dangerous high winds.
High wind gusts approaching 70 miles per hour (113 km per hour) contributed to the flooding, by driving water in, and the extensive power outages, by downing trees and power lines.
The winds also snarled travel. New York’s LaGuardia and John F. Kennedy airports halted most flights due to high winds on Friday afternoon. More than a quarter of flights into and out of New York’s three major airports and Boston’s airport were canceled, according to tracking service Flightaware.com. Passenger railroad Amtrak halted service between New York, Boston and Washington.
One flight landing at Washington’s Dulles Airport came in through turbulence so rough that most passengers became sick and the pilots were on the verge of becoming sick, the Federal Aviation Administration said. [nL2N1QK1CT]
High winds tipped over at least two tractor-trailers on the Mario Cuomo Bridge north of New York City, bringing traffic on approaching roads to a crawl, TV images showed.
The National Weather Service had coastal flood watches and warnings in place from southern Maine through coastal North Carolina, including New York’s eastern suburbs, and was also tracking a snowstorm heading east out the Ohio Valley that could drop significant amounts of snow in northern New York State.
More than 1 million homes and businesses were without power across the region, with the largest number of outages spread across Virginia, Maryland, West Virginia, Ohio, Michigan and New York state, utilities said.