Wintery Nightmare: Northeast Braces for Storm

It may be the beginning of March, but winter is not going away without a fight.

An unseasonable winter storm that pummelled much of the southeastern United States was moving north along the East Coast tonight and was expected to keep on making trouble through Monday.

The storm started in the deep south -- a place that rarely gets snow in the middle of winter, let alone March.

"We've had snow as far south as Montgomery, Alabama and while that's not unheard of, it is fairly unusual," AccuWeather meteorologist Jonathan Porter said. "This occurs once every couple of years in these areas.

The heavy snow snarled traffic in Missouri, Tennessee and Alabama and even forced some churches there to cancel Sunday services.

The storm moved into Georgia, blanketing Atlanta with as much as four inches of snow and forcing hundreds of airline cancellations and delays.

Airports up and down the East Coast are warning of similar problems as they prepare for the storm to move north up through Baltimore, Washington, D.C., and Philadelphia, all the way to New York and eventually Boston.

Washington and Northern Virginia are expected up to seven inches of snow to accumulate overnight. While New York and Boston could see as much as 14 inches.

That will mean potential hazards on the roadways, especially the I-95 corridor that stretches from Florida to Maine. It's the busiest stretch of freeway in the country, carrying more than 300,000 cars and trucks every day.

Snow on I-95 and on smaller roads and highways will make the Monday morning commute harrowing in some places, and some cities are urging residents to limit their movements or to take public transportation.

Boston and Washington have already declared snow emergencies, which means federal buildings and schools will likely be closed on Monday.

Some residents think the declaration is a bit premature.

Robert Kavalek, who works at Johns Hopkins University, says every time snow falls in the city, "Panic ensues. We can't handle snow in the city. People just basically don't know what to do."

President Obama said as much last month when he suggested that Washington residents couldn't handle the kind of big snow storms that plague Chicago in winter.

Many residents along the East Coast see the storm as an unwelcome hassle, but for others, it means one thing: A snow day.

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