Blizzard Kills Power For Hundreds Of Thousands Across The East Coast

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Michael Bastasch Contributor
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A massive blizzard has knocked over power lines, leaving tens of thousands of Americans across the eastern seaboard without electricity.

As of 10:40 a.m. Saturday, Winter Storm Jonas had left about 100,000 people in New Jersey in the dark. New Jersey has been buried by about a foot of snow since Friday evening, and more is expected. Lots of traffic and heavy flooding was also reported across the state as well.

New Jersey isn’t alone. Thousands more Americans in other eastern states have also seen their homes go dark and could be without power for days.

Some 50,000 North Carolinians lost their power by 7 p.m. Friday night, according to The News & Observer. A Duke Energy spokeswoman told the paper that crews were working hard to get the lights back on — an easy task in some cases, but much harder in others.

“Trees down on power lines, that’s a pretty easy fix,” Paige Sheehan, a Duke spokeswoman, told The News & Observer. “Some of the other outages are a little more difficult, such as power lines that are down.”

Things got worse for North Carolinians as the snow continued. ABC11 reported by 9 a.m. more than 149,000 residents were left without power across the western part of the state.

“Winds could still gust 25 mph and bring down ice covered branches,” ABC11 weatherman Don Schwenneker told the news station. “Power outages could still occur today. Drier air will bring an end to the spotty light snow by the end of the day. Any areas with runoff will freeze solid tonight with some clearing and temperatures falling toward 20.”

Duke has some 7,000 men on the frontlines of the snowstorm, fixing outages and trying desperately to keep people from losing their power during the massive storm.

The blizzard has also cut the power to thousands of homes served by Dominion Energy — a utility with customers in Virginia and North Carolina. More than 3,300 Dominion customers’ power has been cut off by the fierce snowstorm — luckily, that’s only a small percentage of their overall customer base.

Winter Storm Jonas is expected to cover some parts of the East Coast with 30 inches of snow. So far, the Washington, D.C. area has been pummeled 18 to 24 inches as of Saturday morning. Snowfall is expected to continue late into Saturday night and stop by Sunday morning.

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