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Second winter storm to dump up to a foot of snow on Northeast, Midwest

Winter's relentless wrath resumes Tuesday as another snowstorm sweeping across a two thousand-mile stretch of the country triggers winter-storm warnings in 15 states.

While much of the U.S. digs out from Monday's snow dump, forecasters are warning of more than a foot of snow from the Plains to New England through Wednesday.

"It's another one of these significant snow storms, covering a large swath of the country," said The Weather Channel's Kevin Roth. "There may be more than 12 inches from central New York into New Hampshire and northern Massachusetts overnight Tuesday."

(Read more: Snow alert: Three storms to pound US this week)

People walk in Manhattan during a snowstorm on January 21, 2014 in New York City.
Getty Images
People walk in Manhattan during a snowstorm on January 21, 2014 in New York City.

"Tomorrow morning's commute looks to be pretty unseemly for them," he added, saying that it would likely strike the Northeast at 8 p.m. Tuesday.

It "will be a rough one in Boston tomorrow morning," he said. Major cities like New York, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C., will likely avoid the worst of the snow, but the potential for freezing rain and ice is high.

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Smashing through the Plains on Tuesday, the storm could hit Kansas and Nebraska with more than 12 inches of snow before moving north to dump between five and eight inches on Chicago, Cleveland, Indianapolis and Detroit, Roth said. Schools across Kansas and Missouri have closed, and flight cancellations are mounting ahead of the storm.

The National Weather Service issued winter storm warnings across 15 states early Tuesday from the Rockies to southern Maine.

At least two deaths and one serious injury could be blamed on Monday's storm and its cleanup: In western Kentucky, where the snow began to fall Sunday, a 24-year-old man died after his car skidded into a snowplow, officials told NBC affiliate WFIE.

(Read more: Markets now fear US economy chilled by more than weather)

Meanwhile in New York, a 73-year-old man was struck and killed by a snowplow that was backing up on a Brooklyn street, police told NBC New York.

A 10-year-old girl also remained in serious condition Monday evening after she was impaled in the back by a metal rod while sledding north of Baltimore, Md., the Associated Press reported.

The system forced government offices, courts and schools to close in parts of Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia. Cars came grinding to a halt as speed limits were reduced on many major highways throughout the region. In New Jersey, Gov. Chris Christie also declared a state of emergency.

A third storm is also likely to form over the weekend according to Guy Walton, a forecaster with The Weather Channel, although it is too early to tell the orientation or path of the storm.

(Read more: Bill Nye on polar vortex: Weather of the future?)

"There will likely be high impacts from the Midwest into the Northeast and perhaps even the South Saturday and Sunday," he said.

Millions in the U.S. have already suffered from an unforgiving winter, especially through the month of January. And last week, Southern states like Georgia and Alabama were caught flat-footed by just a few inches of snow — leaving motorists and school children unable to get home.

By Henry Austin of NBC News

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