US blizzard 2016: Clearing up after huge snowstorm

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Millions of people across the eastern US face huge challenges with the working week set to begin, following a massive snowstorm that virtually paralysed many cities.

Public transport will be patchy, many roads are still treacherous and airports remain severely disrupted.

Government buildings in Washington and many schools will be closed on Monday.

Near record snowfall swept from the capital to New York, with at least 29 deaths reported since Friday.

The fatalities were as a result of car accidents, carbon monoxide poisoning and heart attacks suffered while shovelling snow.

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‘Snowmageddon’

Many East Coast residents spent Sunday digging out their cars and clearing pathways of snow which reached about 3ft (91cm) in five states.

The storm, dubbed “Snowmageddon” and “Snowzilla”, has now weakened and headed out into the Atlantic Ocean.

It affected some 85 million people, at one point cutting the power to 300,000 people. The heaviest fall was recorded in Glengary, West Virginia, which had 42in.

In New York City – which saw its second-highest snowfall since records began in 1869 – a travel ban that effectively shut the city down now been lifted.

New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority has said that almost all public transport services will be running in time for the morning rush hour.

All New York City schools will open, the New York Times said in its update on services.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio urged people to leave their cars covered with snow all week, but he tweeted that the city was now “bouncing back”.

Other areas were faring less well.

In Washington DC, less used to dealing with heavy snow, an “extremely limited” metro, rail and bus service is due to run and residents have been warned to expect delays. Officials said fares would not be charged.

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Federal government offices and public schools in the US capital will remain shut throughout the day. Many schools all the way up to New Jersey will also be closed.

State employees in Virginia and Maryland were told to stay home on Monday.

Nearly 12,000 flights had to be cancelled over the weekend.

Hundreds more will be cancelled on Monday, although airports in New York City, Baltimore, and Philadelphia have limited services.

By the time the snow had stopped falling after two days, late on Saturday, New York’s Central Park had received 26.8in, the second-biggest fall recorded since 1869.

The total was just 0.1in (0.25cm) shy of the all-time high, 26.9in, recorded in February 2006.

However, the 26.6in that fell in the park on Saturday alone was a one-day record for the city.

Emergencies were declared in 11 states and in the District of Columbia.

Parts of New Jersey and Delaware also reported coastal flooding.

Culled from: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-35394742

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