At least 6 killed in deadly storm, thousands without power

At least five people have been killed in a ferocious storm that hammered the Northeast with powerful winds, relentles...

Posted: Mar 4, 2018 9:10 AM
Updated: Mar 4, 2018 9:10 AM

At least five people have been killed in a ferocious storm that hammered the Northeast with powerful winds, relentless rain and historic flooding.

The nor'easter moved out to sea Saturday, but not before it knocked out power -- perhaps for days -- to more than 900,000 customers from the mid-Atlantic to New England.

"People in these homes need to plan for a prolonged outage," Kurt Schwartz, director of the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency, said Friday night. "This is a multi-day restoration event."

The flooding is "the worst that we've seen in years," said Capt. John Dougan of the Quincy, Massachusetts Police Department, which had carried out more than 250 rescues between 8 a.m. Friday and midmorning Saturday. "We're seeing homes underwater, their basements were flooded out, the electricity was off."

Emergency officials urged residents on higher ground to stay indoors, even after the storm pushed out.

About 92% of customers in Scituate, Massachusetts -- home to an estimated 18,000 residents, according to the US Census Bureau -- are without electricity, according to James Boudreau, the town's administrator. He said Saturday afternoon it would be 72 hours before power was fully restored.

Nearly 15 million people were still under a coastal flooding warning Saturday afternoon.

The storm morphed Friday into a "bomb cyclone" after undergoing a rapid pressure drop known as bombogenesis. It slammed much of the Northeast with heavy snow and rain, prompting significant coastal flooding and hurricane-force gusts in New England.

Winds along parts of the Massachusetts coast that whipped in excess of 90 miles per hour are due to ease Saturday, CNN forecasters said.

The storm also dumped heavy snow from Ohio to New England and into upstate New York, where more than 3 feet was recorded.

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Latest developments

- Power outages: More than 900,000 customers were without power Saturday from Virginia to Massachusetts.

- Coastal flooding: Shoreline communities saw another round of "moderate to major" flooding Saturday afternoon during high tide, with the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency forecasting storm surge from 2.5 to 4 feet along the coast.

- Aftermath response: The governors of Maryland, Virginia and Massachusetts issued emergency declarations, allowing state and local agencies to help those affected.

- Flight cancellations: About 250 flights in the storm zone were canceled Saturday, according to the flight-tracking website FlightAware.com. That compares with more than 3,000 US flights scratched Friday, most at the busiest Northeast airports in Boston, Philadelphia and New York.

Five killed by falling trees

At least five people died in the storm, all killed by falling trees, authorities said. They include: a 77-year-old woman in Kingsville, Maryland; an 11-year-old boy in Putnam County, New York; a 44-year-old man in James City County, Virginia; a 6-year-old in Chesterfield County, Virginia; and a Newport, Rhode Island, man in his 70s.

The 11-year-old was in his home when a large tree came crashing down, trapping him. A responding deputy tried to free the boy, whose mother was taken to hospital.

Another young boy, just 6 years old, suffered a similar fate when a tree fell through his Virginia mobile home as he was sleeping on a top bunk bed. The boy was rushed to hospital, but his mother told the station his organs were failing.

"Doctors say we have to let him go," she told CNN affiliate WRIC.

Cynthia Creighton's son was in her car when a neighbor's tree fell on top of the vehicle in Watertown, Massachusetts.

"The house shook, and we heard a noise. We didn't know what it was," Creighton told CNN affiliate WHDH. "We ran out, my son was still in the car with the tree on top of it."

Creighton's son, who was in the back seat, was not injured, she said.

Boston under water

High tides on Friday powered coastal flooding in Boston and other parts of Massachusetts, leaving streets awash for the second time since a massive nor'easter in early January.

Kayakers paddled down Boston streets and National Guard members rescued 50 people from their homes in nearby Quincy, sometimes carrying them to safety in the scoopers of front-end loaders, CNN affiliate WBZ reported.

Boston Harbor has only seen tides above 15 feet twice -- in 1978 and in January, during the last bomb cyclone. A high tide late Friday morning came up a little short, reaching 14.67 feet, but still sent water sloshing through the streets of East Boston.

More record-setting high tides might strike Boston Harbor on Saturday during the midday high tide.

With the moon full, the tide is at its highest point of the month, and the storm surge could drive as much as 4 feet of water into coastal neighborhoods, CNN meteorologists said. Massachusetts emergency officials said tides "will be astronomically high" in the next few days.

"I encourage all residents to be mindful of the storm and encourage employers to take the weather into consideration, which will mostly impact the coastal areas of our city," Boston Mayor Marty Walsh said.

In Boston, many streets were closed and city officials advised people not to drive or walk in high water.

The Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency said in a statement residents in the eastern part of the state should expect some rain and snow Saturday night, and minor flooding is forecast for some rivers and streams in southeastern Massachusetts.

Historic flooding prompts rescues

Quincy residents who were rescued from inundated homes told CNN they'd never seen anything like this weekend's flooding.

"It was pretty scary," said Alyssa Fitzgerald. "Once you saw the National Guard, that's when I was like, 'OK, we should have evacuated.'"

Fitzgerald and her husband hunkered down overnight after their home lost power with their 3-year-old son and 1-year-old daughter, she said.

"Not like anything we've had before," Fitzgerald said. "Much worse than the snowstorm we had."

Only a few storms even can compare with this level of flooding, including a 1978 blizzard, a storm in 1991 and January's bomb cyclone, Dougan, the Quincy police captain, said Saturday.

"We've been doing evacuations all through the night and today," he said.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 15229

Reported Deaths: 723
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds99925
Lauderdale73561
Madison72023
Scott65012
Neshoba63038
Jones59825
Forrest55338
DeSoto5337
Rankin4217
Leake42112
Holmes39728
Copiah3104
Jackson30513
Attala29216
Yazoo2734
Newton2714
Leflore25831
Harrison2577
Lincoln25628
Monroe25525
Lamar2355
Oktibbeha23512
Lowndes2119
Pearl River20931
Pike20211
Adams19615
Noxubee1856
Wayne1771
Warren1719
Washington1687
Covington1652
Bolivar16011
Jasper1574
Smith15011
Lee1496
Kemper14411
Clarke14318
Chickasaw13312
Lafayette1314
Coahoma1214
Carroll11711
Marion1159
Clay1124
Winston1121
Claiborne1112
Lawrence1021
Simpson1010
Yalobusha905
Hancock9011
Tate891
Grenada893
Wilkinson889
Itawamba877
Union835
Marshall833
Montgomery831
Sunflower813
Jefferson Davis772
Tippah7311
Panola703
Webster691
Calhoun644
Humphreys607
Amite601
Walthall550
Tunica543
Prentiss523
Perry503
Choctaw432
Jefferson421
Tishomingo320
Pontotoc323
Stone300
Franklin282
Tallahatchie271
Quitman260
George251
Alcorn171
Benton150
Greene121
Sharkey70
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 17359

Reported Deaths: 618
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Mobile2191115
Jefferson1780102
Montgomery163238
Tuscaloosa73814
Marshall6879
Franklin5457
Lee54033
Shelby50319
Tallapoosa42364
Butler40217
Chambers35325
Walker3442
Elmore3398
Madison3274
Baldwin2839
Dallas2603
Morgan2511
Etowah24811
DeKalb2433
Lowndes23812
Coffee2291
Sumter2206
Autauga2164
Houston2094
Bullock2034
Pike1980
Colbert1782
Russell1670
Marengo1636
Lauderdale1612
Hale1598
Calhoun1543
Choctaw1518
Barbour1501
Wilcox1447
Clarke1422
Cullman1260
Randolph1257
Marion12111
St. Clair1181
Pickens1114
Dale1100
Talladega1093
Chilton1001
Limestone940
Greene944
Winston880
Covington771
Jackson772
Crenshaw763
Macon754
Henry742
Bibb721
Washington686
Blount611
Escambia573
Lawrence480
Geneva400
Conecuh391
Coosa381
Monroe372
Perry370
Cherokee373
Clay272
Lamar230
Fayette150
Cleburne141
Unassigned00
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