Winter Storm Stella lashed the
northeastern United States with sleet and
snow Tuesday, cancelling thousands of
flights, closing schools and shutting
stores, but New York and Washington escaped
the worst of the weather.
Blizzard warnings were issued in parts of
Connecticut, Massachusetts and upstate New
York, but were lifted for New York City, the
US financial capital home to 8.4 million
residents, where snow turned to sleet and
Dire forecasts forced the postponement of
the first meeting between US President
Donald Trump and German Chancellor Angela
Merkel in Washington until Friday, but in
the end, snowfall in the US capital was
AFP / John
SAEKI, Laurence CHU
US winter storm
The National Weather Service (NWS)
drastically revised down New York City's
expected accumulation with 7.2 inches (18
centimeters) recorded in Central Park, and
10-13 inches in parts of neighboring New
Jersey and Connecticut.
Instead the trajectory of the storm
shifted west and north, bringing up to 30
inches to central parts of New York state
with strong winds causing whiteout
conditions, and heavy snow further north.
"The storm is not delivering as much snow
as forecasted at all and that is very good
for the people of New York City, but the
conditions are still very dangerous," Mayor
Bill de Blasio told reporters.
AFP / DON
Winter Storm Stella unleashed its fury on
much of the northeastern United States on
March 14 dropping snow and sleet across the
region and leading to school closures and
thousands of flight cancellations
He urged people to stay indoors as much
as possible, warning that snow, sleet and
freezing rain would continue throughout the
afternoon combined with wind gusts as high
as 50 miles per hour (80 kilometers per
Temperatures would dip below freezing
overnight, making roads and sidewalks
treacherous, and a city-wide state of
emergency would remain in place until
midnight (0400 GMT Wednesday), he said.
- 'It sucks' -
While the New York subway and bus
services were operating, much of the city
remained quiet with schools, shops and
businesses largely closed as workers
GOES/AFP / Handout
This satellite image shows Storm Stella
sweeping across the northeastern United
New York's John F. Kennedy and LaGuardia
airports and Newark Liberty International
Airport were largely shut, with the majority
of flights cancelled, and trains heading
north towards Boston were also suspended.
Autumn Young, 35, the owner of a soap
company, said she had been stranded at Grand
Central Station since 6:00 am after her
flight to see family in North Carolina and
her train home were cancelled.
"I can't even get out of the city. I've
missed a whole day of work and meetings,"
Young told AFP.
"It sucks, it's awful. I am traveling
with my service dog -- he can't go on the
sidewalk because the salt is bad for his
The United Nations headquarters closed
for the day, as did the courts and a string
of popular museums, some of the most-visited
tourist attractions in the city.
Officials announced that schools and rail
services would re-open Wednesday.
AFP / Paul J.
Storm Stella forced the cancellation of more
than 6,800 flights -- with airports in New
York, Boston, Baltimore, Washington DC and
Philadelphia the hardest hit
More than 8,700 flights were canceled
Monday through Wednesday, with airports in
New York, Boston, Baltimore, Washington and
Philadelphia hit hardest, according to the
tracking service FlightAware.
US ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki
Haley, tweeted a picture of the snow saying,
"A great day to binge watch 'The Americans'"
-- a reference to the thriller TV series
about Russian spies embedded in US suburbia.
Her post triggered a stream of mockery, in
light of the controversy over Russian
meddling in last year's election that has
dogged Trump's presidency.
- 'Unpredictable lady' -
"Mother Nature is an unpredictable lady
sometimes," said New York State Governor
Andrew Cuomo after meteorologists conceded
it was no longer going to be the worst East
Coast storm in an unusually mild winter.
"It has been less snowfall than we
predicted, less disruption," Cuomo said.
Neither was there major damage in
neighboring New Jersey.
"The storm has under-performed," said the
state's Republican Governor Chris Christie.
In 2016, a record 27.3 inches fell in
Central Park in 24 hours in a storm dubbed "Snowzilla"
that paralyzed parts of the northeast and
left 18 people dead.
The NWS said winter storm warnings were in
effect from Maine down to eastern West
Virginia, but snowfall further south was
A few inches of snow, sleet and ice covered
the streets in the Washington area, where
federal workers were allowed to arrive three
hours late and the capital's subway system
operated on a weekend schedule.