Thousands of flights canceled, inconvenience in the movement of trains and tens of thousands of people without electricity. These are the effects of the “cyclone bomba”, the storm that is crashing in these hours on the east coast of the United States, already for almost a week in the grab of the cold (which has caused 17 deaths across the country). In thirteen states, from South Carolina to Maine, the storm alert was issued, in Georgia, North Carolina, and Virginia state of emergency is declared. At the same time the governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo, has proclaimed an emergency in the southern part of the state, including Westchester County, New York City and Long Island.
Over 58 million Americans are affected and more than 13 million are threatened from the storm. Already over 3,600 flights are canceled. Many other cancellations are expected in the next few hours. At the ‘Jfk’ international airport in New York all flights have been suspended: the airport has been closed for hours starting from mid-morning. On the other hand, 95% of the flights and 75% of the Newark Liberty in New Jersey remained on the ground at La Guardia. American Airlines has canceled all departures from Boston.
More than 77 thousand people have also been without electricity in several states, particularly in Virginia, North Carolina and Georgia. The Weather Service is particularly concerned about the possibility of blackouts in New England, where the arctic temperatures are expected.
In the Big Apple, as well as in many other cities in the region, including Boston, schools have remained closed, and authorities have urged citizens not to get behind the wheel if not necessary, but to use public transport. Amtrak has reduced the train service between New York and Boston to a minimum and canceled trains between Washington DC and Virginia. In Savannah, Georgia, three convoy carriages were derailed on the route from Miami to New York, but there were no injuries among the 300 passengers.
According to Weather Channel meteorologist Jon Erdman, it is one of the most powerful storms ever seen on the east coast of the United States, a sort of winter hurricane. The danger, in fact, is not only made up of snow, but also of very strong winds and cold temperatures. In some areas of Long Island, visibility is close to zero. In New York temperatures are expected around -20 degrees Celsius. Even in Northern Florida the lowest temperatures have been recorded for several years, and in the capital Tallahassee it is the first significant snowfall since 1989.