The Free Press, Mankato, MN

State, national news

December 8, 2013

Storm along East Coast dumps snow, snarls traffic

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The snow fell so heavily in Philadelphia on Sunday that yard markers at Lincoln Financial Field — where the Eagles beat the Detroit Lions — were completely obscured. It was almost as bad in Pittsburgh, where the snow intensified after opening kickoff.

Philadelphia fan Dave Hamilton, of Ivyland, layered up for the game, wearing an Eagles shirt topped with an Eagles sweatshirt and Eagles winter coat.

"Twenty-seven years I've been a season-ticket holder, I've never seen snow at the game like this," he said. "It just kept coming down. But we are all having fun out there."

Philadelphia International Airport had a temporary ground stop Sunday afternoon with snow totals around 4 to 6 inches. Spokeswoman Stacey Jackson said a number of passengers were expected to remain in the airport overnight since area hotels had been full for several days. She said staff would hand out pillows and blankets to travelers to make them "feel at home even though they are not."

Air passengers in the Washington-area experienced increasing delays as the season's first real snowstorm set in. The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority said many flights had been delayed at Dulles International and Ronald Reagan Washington National airports.

Virginia, parts of West Virginia and the metropolitan Washington, D.C., area braced for blackouts under steady freezing rain, wet snow and sleet. Parts of northwest and southwest Virginia and southern West Virginia were getting snow, while sleet and freezing rain prevailed west and north of Richmond.

In Maryland, a chain-reaction accident on Interstate 81 in Washington County involving more than 20 vehicles delayed snow removal efforts for hours. The highway was closed for more than three hours after a tractor-trailer ran into the median to avoid cars that had spun out. It was hit by another tractor-trailer that overturned and spilled its load. Several other tractor-trailers ran off the road and jackknifed as their drivers tried to avoid the crash.

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