NEW YORK – A powerful storm of wind, rain and snow hit the East Coast of the United States on Friday, causing numerous flights to be canceled, leaving many homes without electricity and threatening coastal communities with a high risk of floods.
According to the authorities, the biggest danger from the storm is expected in parts of Massachusetts, New Jersey and New York.
Combinations of strong winds and high tides, snow and rain have already caused flooding in a number of coastal areas, including the city of Boston.
“Take this storm seriously! This is a LIFE & DEATH situation for those living along the coast, especially those ocean-exposed shorelines,” the National Weather Service in Boston warned on Twitter.
Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker warned that the storm could be even more devastating than the one early last January, the biggest to date this winter, and announced that the National Guard has been mobilized to deal with the emergency.
The first floods occurred this Friday in parts of Massachusetts, but other places further south are now on the alert, including New York and New Jersey.
Storm warnings extend from Maine to North Carolina, affecting some 80 million inhabitants.
Boston, New York, Philadelphia and Washington were lashed Friday by the bad weather, which caused serious problems for its highways, trains and airports.
Powerful winds of over 85 mph (140 kph) turned over two trucks ona a New York bridge.
By 2:30 pm local time, more than 2,800 flights had been canceled in the United States and more than 2,000 had suffered delays.
In Washington, federal government offices were closed, while school authorities across the region closed most of the classrooms.