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After the blizzard, New England digs out amid the big chill

A man shovels snow in near whiteout conditions during a nor'easter in Marshfield, Mass., on Saturday.
Joseph Prezioso
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AFP via Getty Images
A man shovels snow in near whiteout conditions during a nor'easter in Marshfield, Mass., on Saturday.

Updated January 30, 2022 at 10:30 AM ET
Gusty winds and falling temperatures plunged New England into a deep freeze as people dig out from a powerful nor'easter that dumped mounds of snow, flooded coastlines and knocked power out.

Massachusetts bore the brunt of the storm, with the towns of Sharon and Stoughton getting more than 2 1/2 feet of snow before the storm moved out.

More than 50,000 remained without power in Massachusetts on Sunday, down from a peak of more than 100,000. William Hinkle, a spokesperson with Eversource in New Hampshire, said the company shifted some staff and out-of state contractors they'd hired to help with the storm in New Hampshire down to Massachusetts. It's a shift he expects will continue in the storm's aftermath.

“Any remaining Eversource New Hampshire resources will go down to Massachusetts to support our neighbors and colleagues down there with their massive restoration effort," Hinkle said.

Eileen Meaney with the New Hampshire Department of Transportation said travel remained light in the state Saturday, with many people staying home to avoid the bad weather.

"There were bands of snow that felt that fell at a rate of of over an inch and a half to two inches an hour, and that really creates difficult traveling," Meaney said.

People walk through the snow in Harvard Square on Saturday in Cambridge, Mass. A powerful winter storm brought blinding blizzard conditions with high winds to the Northeast.
Adam Glanzman / Getty Images
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Getty Images
People walk through the snow in Harvard Square on Saturday in Cambridge, Mass. A powerful winter storm dumped more than a foot of snow in states across the Northeast.
White-out conditions are seen at Government Center Station in Boston as winter storm weather brings blizzard conditions with high winds. More than 100,000 are without power in Massachusetts as of Saturday afternoon.
Scott Eisen / Getty Images
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Getty Images
Heavy snowfall with high winds creates whiteout conditions in Boston. More than 100,000 are without power in Massachusetts as of Saturday afternoon.

Multiple states measure well over a foot of snow

Other states across the Northeast saw snow totals of a foot or more by afternoon. Observers in Warren, R.I., measured a state high of 24.6 inches. Areas of New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland all measured at least 14 inches or more.

Groton, Conn., measured 21.5 inches. In the state, wind gusts had been more than 60 mph and snow was falling at a rate of 2 to 3 inches per hour.

People carry skis as they walk through the snow along a street in New York City on Saturday.
Ed Jones / AFP via Getty Images
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AFP via Getty Images
In New York City, some people broke out the skis on Saturday. More traditional forms of transportation — such as trains and planes — were subject to mass cancellations.

Blizzard warnings were issued across large swaths of the Northeast coast, but by Saturday afternoon, the National Weather Service's New York office had confirmed that blizzard criteria had been met in two areas: Suffolk County, N.Y., and New London, Conn. The weather service was working to determine whether other regions have also experienced blizzard conditions, which include blowing snow, winds of at least 35 mph and visibility of less than a quarter of a mile for more than three hours.

Flights and trains were canceled across the region

Travel in the region has also been severely disrupted. More than 3,500 flights within, into and out of the United States had been canceled as of Saturday night, according to Flight Aware. About 90% or more of flights out of Boston Logan, LaGuardia and Newark airports were canceled.

And Amtrak trains operating along the East Coast between Washington, D.C., and Boston have been canceled.

The National Weather Service said the storm is a result of "bombogenesis," which occurs when a "midlatitude cyclone rapidly intensifies, dropping at least 24 millibars over 24 hours," according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The result is a "bomb cyclone."

Satellite images show a classic "comma-shape" system, which the NWS says is indicative of a maturing cyclone.

Extremely low temperatures Saturday night into Sunday are expected, along with dangerous wind chills.

Power outages continued into the night. In Massachusetts, 83,600 did not have power as of 11 p.m., while in Maine the number was 3,800, according to PowerOutage.us.

Boston Superintendent of Streets Mike Brohel asked residents to stay off the roads until Saturday night so city workers could clean the streets up as much as possible as the storm starts to slow down.
Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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