Winter storm hits eastern US

By Aditi Sangal, Melissa Mahtani and Mike Hayes, CNN

Updated 5:36 p.m. ET, January 17, 2022
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9:47 a.m. ET, January 17, 2022

Drivers warned to stay home due to slick roadways

From CNN's Kelly McCleary

Roads will remain dangerous Monday across much of the Southeast, especially on overpasses and at higher elevations, CNN meteorologist Michael Guy said.

Temperatures at or near freezing will keep roads slick in Knoxville, Tennessee, and Asheville, North Carolina, and areas to the north through central Ohio. There could also be icing issues Monday in places including Winston-Salem, North Carolina; Roanoke, Virginia; and Charleston, West Virginia, Guy said.

The governors of South Carolina, North Carolina and Virginia activated members of the National Guard to help with storm response.

"They're equipped with emergency response vehicles that can move through the snow," North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper said Sunday of the 200 Guard members deployed in his state. "As much as 8 to 12 inches of snow has fallen in some counties, and significant icing is causing trouble in the central part of the state."

North Carolina authorities responded to more than 400 crashes Sunday, State Highway Patrol spokesperson First Sgt. Christopher Knox told CNN Sunday night. Two people, both 41 and from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, were killed Sunday morning on Interstate 95 in Nash County after their vehicle left the road and struck trees in the median, he said.

"Exceeding a safe speed for the conditions is the proximate cause of the collision," Knox said. "Weather at the time was a mixture of wintry precipitation."

In South Carolina, 120 service members were activated and many have been assisting stranded motorists, tweets from the South Carolina National Guard show.

And in Virginia, 75 service members were staged for storm response, including "personnel with chain saws for clearing fallen trees and heavy duty tactical vehicles capable of traveling through deep snow at key locations," the Virginia National Guard said in a news release.

Virginia State Police responded to nearly 1,000 traffic crashes and disabled vehicles Sunday across the state the agency said. The incidents were "mostly vehicle damage," and there were no reported traffic deaths, it said in a tweet.

Accidents also were reported Sunday across north Georgia, the National Weather Service office in Atlanta reported, and Gov. Brian Kemp asked residents to stay off the roads.

"Potential for black ice tonight with the temperatures dropping down into the 20s, so please stay off the roads tonight and tomorrow, if at all possible. It's going to be very treacherous in a lot of parts of our state," Kemp said Sunday on Twitter. "Also, the potential for downed power lines is very high right now. So, the less traffic we have on the roads the easier it is for our partners to clear the roads and restore power."

9:58 a.m. ET, January 17, 2022

More than 215,000 people are still without power on the East Coast

From CNN's Roxanne Garcia

There are currently 217,089 customers without power in 11 states across the East Coast due to a two-day winter storm event, according to PowerOutage.US

These are the states dealing with the biggest outages:

  • South Carolina: 32,768
  • North Carolina: 31,432
  • West Virginia: 24,183
  • Georgia: 23,414
  • Pennsylvania: 19,679

8:48 a.m. ET, January 17, 2022

Nearly 90,000 customers remain without power in the South

From CNN's Tina Burnside 

Workers clear debris after snow blanked Charlotte, North Carolina, Sunday, January 16, 2022. 
Workers clear debris after snow blanked Charlotte, North Carolina, Sunday, January 16, 2022.  Peter Zay/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Thousands of customers across the southeastern United States are still without power after a strong winter storm dumped snow and ice on the region over the weekend.

As of 7 a.m. ET Monday, there are 88,162 customers without power in Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina, according to PowerOutage.US

Here's a breakdown of the outages by state:

  • South Carolina: 33,278 
  • North Carolina: 31,355
  • Georgia: 23,529
8:30 a.m. ET, January 17, 2022

US airlines cancel more than 1,200 flights due to winter weather

From CNN's Pete Muntean

United Airlines and American Airlines planes sit on the tarmac as snow begins to fall at Ronald Reagan National Airport in Arlington, Virginia, on Sunday, January 16, 2022.
United Airlines and American Airlines planes sit on the tarmac as snow begins to fall at Ronald Reagan National Airport in Arlington, Virginia, on Sunday, January 16, 2022. Samuel Corum/Bloomberg/Getty Images

Flight cancellations by the thousands have continued into Monday due to a winter storm that hit major hubs as it moved up the East Coast.

As of 6:45 a.m. ET, US airlines have canceled 1,270 Monday flights across the country, according to flight tracking site FlightAware.

Airlines canceled 3,058 flights nationwide on Sunday, the most flights since Jan. 3.

The most cancellations are in Charlotte, where more than 30% of all departures and arrivals have been canceled Monday. On Sunday, more than 90% of all Charlotte arrivals and departures were canceled. 

Charlotte/Douglas International Airport is a major hub for American Airlines which canceled 23% of all flights Sunday, according to FlightAware. About 28% of all Sunday departures from Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, the largest hub for Delta Air Lines, were canceled.

Delta, American, United and Southwest have all issued travel so customers who are impacted by the storm can rebook free of charge.

8:27 a.m. ET, January 17, 2022

Winter storm will bring more heavy snowfall to the Northeast today

From CNN's Kelly McCleary

Snow falls over the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial on the National Mall on Sunday, January 16, 2022 in Washington, DC. Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times/Getty Images
Snow falls over the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial on the National Mall on Sunday, January 16, 2022 in Washington, DC. Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times/Getty Images

More than 50 million people across the eastern US are under winter weather alerts early Monday as a massive storm system churns on, after leaving its mark from Florida to Maine with tornadoes, freezing rain and snow.

The winter storm will bring more heavy snowfall on the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday to the Northeast after causing widespread power outages, major road closures and myriad flight cancellations a day earlier across the Southeast.

Air travel is still snarled by the wintry conditions, with more than 1,200 US flights canceled as of Monday morning after 3,000 US flights were canceled Sunday, according to FlightAware.com. Power is out early Monday to more than 180,000 customers from Georgia to New York, according to PowerOutage.us.

Eight to 12 inches of snow could fall Monday in Pittsburgh and Buffalo, New York, CNN meteorologist Michael Guy said. More than a foot of heavy snow is also expected across the upper Ohio Valley through the lower Great Lakes region, according to the National Weather Service.

Strong winds Monday could lead to coastal flooding from Virginia to Maine, Guy said. Buffalo could see wind gusts up to 45 mph, while New York City may get 55 mph gusts, and some parts of Maine could get gusts up to 65 mph.

Cold air behind the storm system and a prior arctic plunge over the Northeast will keep temperatures below freezing until Wednesday in that region, while parts of the South and Mid-Atlantic will see temperatures recover by Tuesday, Guy said. But another round of bitter cold, possibly with snow, is shaping up for the end of this week, he added.

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