Photos show the East Coast blizzard’s harsh impact across the region

Snowstorm Stella didn’t meet forecast predictions in some major population centers, including New York City.

Instead, the storm shifted west and struck less-dense areas on the East Coast. Meteorologists say particular features of the I-95 corridor make it especially difficult for forecasters to get it right.

Nonetheless, the storm’s impact was widely felt in inland areas. These photos show how intense it got.


The snowstorm pushed huge amounts of snow and heavy winds across the East Coast on March 14.

source
NOAA

Early forecasts suggested that major cities including Boston, Philadelphia, and New York City could experience historic March snowfalls.


But the most intense bands of the storm skirted north and west, just missing New York City.

source
NWS

New Yorkers woke up Tuesday to find just a few inches of snow on the ground.


Much of the snow in the New York metro area fell overnight, with the weather turning to sleet and icy rain by morning.

The highest official total anywhere in New York City was 7.2 inches by afternoon.


Nonetheless, schools and some public transit remained closed into the day.


Boston was hit harder than New York, remaining under a blizzard warning until 8 p.m.


Winds remained intense across New England through the morning. But the storm’s westward shift saved Boston from a more extreme scenario as well.


In Philadelphia, snow also fell shy of expectations.


The most extreme blizzard conditions affected more inland areas. There were even reports of <a href=”http://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-news/reports-blizzard-of-2017-shuts-down-travel-from-virginia-to-new-hampshire-as-snow-falls-rapidly/70001108″>an avalanche</a> in one part of Pennsylvania.


Parts of New York’s Hudson Valley could have 2 feet of snow on the ground before the day is through.


Coastal flooding from New Jersey to New England is also a serious risk as the storm pounds shorelines.


Many people expecting to fly on Tuesday were stranded, with more than 5,000 flights canceled across the region.


All the major airports were open and functioning by morning, however.


Although the worst parts of the mid-March storm skipped major population centers, it remains a very unusual event for the region.


The last time Boston got more than a foot of snow this late in the year was April 1, 1997.


The cold snap poses dangers to plants in gardens and farmers’ fields, since an unusually warm February triggered early springtime across much of the country, with plants blossoming weeks early.


Now the wind, cold, and ice threaten to damage many of those early bloomers.


Meanwhile, most people should be back to their regular schedules soon enough.