Winter storm moves into Mid-Atlantic; snow, sleet expected through Tuesday

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A "potentially historic" storm could dump 2 to 3 feet of snow from northern New Jersey to southern Maine starting Monday, crippling a region that has largely been spared so far this winter, the National Weather Service said. (Jan. 26)

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A crewmember de-ices a Frontier Airlines plane at LaGuardia Airport in New York, Monday, Jan. 26, 2015. More than 5,000 flights in and out of East Coast airports have been canceled as a major snowstorm packing up to three feet of snow barrels down on the region. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)


WASHINGTON — As a winter storm moves through the region, making its way northeast, meteorologists say Mid-Atlantic residents should brace for more scattered snow showers, sleet and icy conditions Monday night.

Commuters saw mostly slick roads with patches of ice in Maryland, northern Virginia and Delaware Monday evening.

Bob Sager, spokesman for the Maryland Highway Safety Authority, said the roads were wet early in the evening, but overnight as temperatures drop, icy patches were expected to form. Sager said crews were going to be deployed to salt roads across the state.

Virginia Department of Transportation spokesman Mike Murphy said significant portions of major highways and roads in Loudoun County were covered in snow by 8 p.m. Monday. Murphy said roads in Prince William and Fairfax counties were in slightly better condition, but motorists should still be conscious of patches of ice as temperatures drop.

National Weather Service meteorologist Howard Silverman said Monday night that snow in Maryland and Washington would continue to accumulate until between midnight and 2 a.m. Silverman said both areas are expected to get between 1-3 inches of snow in total, although western Maryland_Allegheny County in particular_could see up to 8 inches of snow accumulate on the ground by Tuesday morning. That's largely due to residual snowfall from Sunday night.

The snow is expected to stop in the region sometime around lunchtime on Tuesday, Howard said, when temperatures will rise to above freezing. However, morning commuters should be conscious of ice on the roads.

More than 200 flights were canceled ahead of the weather in the Washington-Baltimore region on Monday, and Amtrak announced that it planned to suspend service in the New England region on Tuesday. Service between New York and Washington on Monday was modified, and passengers were warned to expect delayed frequencies of trains.

Although temperatures in Washington are expected to be slightly warmer than surrounding regions, possibly reaching the low 30s overnight, Mayor Muriel Bowser on Monday evening activated a cold-emergency plan for District residents. In Baltimore, the city's health department announced a Code Blue for Tuesday and Wednesday, when temperatures are expected to dip into the low 20s.

The Maryland State Police activated a Snow Emergency Plan in Washington County about 7 p.m. Monday, which means motorists must use either snow tires or all-weather tires, and are prohibited from parking in areas designated as snow-emergency routes.

Reagan National Airport was the most affected of the region's three major airports Monday, with about 140 canceled incoming and outgoing flights, according to the flight-tracking service FlightAware. At Baltimore's airport, more than 60 flights in and out were canceled, and nearly 40 were canceled at Dulles International Airport.

Thousands more flights were canceled or delayed into and out of East Coast airports.

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