Millions of people in the U.S. Northeast were without power as an unseasonably early storm dumped heavy, wet snow over the weekend on a region more used to gaping at leaves in October than shovelling snow.
The snow was due to stop falling in the northeastern New England states late Sunday, but it could be days before many of the more than 3 million without electricity see it restored, officials warned.
At least 11 deaths were blamed on the weather, and states of emergency were declared in New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts and parts of New York.
The snowstorm is making its way to Atlantic Canada. Environment Canada says heavy rainfall is expected to soak much of the Maritimes while snow is predicted for parts of New Brunswick.
Meteorologist Jeffrey Hilliard says the major concern is a mix of rain, snow and high winds, which will cause hazardous driving conditions in some areas, especially if drivers don’t have their snow tires on yet. But he says the effects of the weather system likely won’t be as harsh on Canada as it has been on the U.S.
The storm smashed record snowfall totals for October in the United States and worsened as it moved north. Communities in western Massachusetts were among the hardest hit. Snowfall totals topped 68.6 centimetres in Plainfield, and nearby Windsor had gotten 66 centimetres by early Sunday.