Millions of commuters along the East Coast face another round of heavy snow, ice and wind gusts on Wednesday as the fourth major snow storm this month strikes the region, closing schools, grounding flights and halting buses and trains.
The nor'easter storm is on track to dump up between 12 and 18 inches of snow on areas from Philadelphia to New York City, said Weather Prediction Center meteorologist Dan Petersen. Gusts of up to 50 miles per hour are also expected to hit major cities on Wednesday and into Thursday, the National Weather Service said.
"Significant amounts of snow, sleet and ice will make travel very hazardous or impossible," the service said in an advisory for New Jersey.
@NWS: Powerful SNOW STORM as seen from your #GOESEast satellite this morning. Over a foot of heavy snow is expected across a large portion of the east coast. http://weather.gov ❄️❄️❄️❄️
More than 4,300 flights have already been cancelled. Airlines said they were waiving fees to change flights to and from the East Coast. Carriers including American, Delta, United and JetBlue said travelers scheduled to fly on Tuesday or Wednesday from a dozen airports along the East Coast can change travel dates to as late as March 25 without paying a date-change fee.
The storm forced schools across the region including those in Philadelphia and New York, the largest school district in the United States, to cancel classes on Wednesday.
But classes in New York City will resume on Thursday, according to the press secretary for New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio.
In New Jersey, Governor Phil Murphy on Tuesday declared a state of emergency, with state offices as well as schools in many districts closed.