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Northeastern US motorists face risk of being stranded as snowfall tops a foot across interior

A storm with feet of snow, blizzard conditions, a significant build-up of ice, tree-breaking winds and plunging temperatures threatens to close roads, cause flight cancellations and disrupt daily activities over a large part of the northeastern United States this weekend.

The storm is not likely to last more than 18-24 hours anywhere, but is hitting hard and fast. The storm will progress quickly from west to east across the region before it moves offshore at the end of the weekend.

A state of emergency, along with travel restrictions, has been declared for Pennsylvania by Gov. Tom Wolf and for New Jersey by Gov. Phil Murphy for the storm. Travel restrictions are also in place across New York state and Ohio.

The storm will end from west to east through Sunday evening although bands of lake-effect snow will continue off lakes Erie and Ontario into Monday.

While the storm will occur completely during the extended Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. weekend, some schools that are not closed on Monday may be forced to do so due to the prevailing dangerous cold, blowing and drifting snow and icy road conditions. Participants in the Women’s March 2019 may have difficulties traveling from activities due to the storm.

Crews may struggle to get all roads free of snow by Tuesday in the hard-hit snow and ice locations. In some areas, conditions may still be unsafe for school buses and students to be outdoors.

Swath of heavy snow, blizzard conditions

Where sleet and freezing rain do not mix in, from northeastern Ohio through northern Pennsylvania, western, central and northern New York state and western and northern New England, at least a foot of snow is forecast with local amounts to 18, 24 and even 36 inches can pile up.