East Coast Residents Weary From Fourth Nor’easter

By Brian K. Sullivan | March 22, 2018

New Yorkers should expect a sloppy commute as the “the last gasp” of a nor’easter that dumped more than a foot in parts of the city heads out to sea.

The city didn’t get the 18 inches (46 centimeters) that some meteorologists predicted, but accumulation was nonetheless substantial in much of the city. Port Richmond on Staten Island got 13.8 inches. Bayside, Queens, got 12.7. And Central Park had 8.2 inches, according to the National Weather Service.

“The last gasp is one final snow band on eastern Long Island,” said Melissa DiSpigna, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Upton, New York. “The morning commute could see a little light snow, but the system is winding down.”

Transit, Outages

Metro North Railroad, the Long Island Rail Road and New Jersey Transit were all operating normal schedules, but riders should expect delays. Slowdowns were reported on Long Island’s Montauk, Port Jefferson and Ronkonkoma lines, according to the railroad’s website.

On the subway, service changes or delays were reported on the 4, 5, 6, the A, C, E, and B, D, F, M subway lines, in some cases due to storing cars on express tracks to protect them from the storm, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority said on its website.

More than 400 flights have been canceled Thursday in and out of Newark Liberty International and New York’s LaGuardia and John F. Kennedy International airports, according to FlightAware, a Houston-based tracking service.

More than 79,000 homes and businesses in New York and New Jersey were blacked out as of 7 a.m., according to data compiled from utility websites by Bloomberg.

Digging Out

The nor’easter, the fourth since March 1, grounded more than 4,400 flights Wednesday, dropping snow as far south as the mountains of North Carolina. Snow had trouble sticking to the ground during the day, but accumulations started to rise after nightfall.

In Washington, government offices will open two hours later Thursday, as the city digs out from 4 to 6 inches of snow.

A pocket of dry air spared Boston and much of New England from the worst of the storm, said Rob Carolan, owner of Hometown Forecast Services Inc. in Nashua, New Hampshire. Connecticut got 6 inches or more in many places. Little fell in Massachusetts.

Temperatures in New York will still be 5 to 10 degrees below the normal highs of 52 degrees Fahrenheit (11 Celsius) for this time of year, yet warm enough to get the melting started, DiSpigna said.

The even better news is that it appears the wave of nor’easters may be ending, Carolan said. Long-term models show the pattern that’s allowed storms to track along the East Coast will break up by early April.