Storm Kenan – More than 5,000 flights grounded as East Coast braces for ‘bomb cyclone’ with blizzards & power cuts

MORE than 5,000 flights have been canceled as the East Coast braces for a major “bomb cyclone” storm with blizzards, floods and power outages.

Some 75million Americans are in the path of Winter Storm Kenan which has already brought snow in New York City with a further 2ft forecast to fall in the worst hit places along with hurricane-force winds.

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Storm Kenan is set to bring heavy snow, hurricane-force winds and floodsCredit: Rex
The East Coast is preparing for the worst blizzards in four years

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The East Coast is preparing for the worst blizzards in four years
Snow fell in New York City overnight and worse is to come on Saturday

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Snow fell in New York City overnight and worse is to come on SaturdayCredit: Getty Images – Getty

Five state governors have declared a state of emergency and warned people not to attempt to travel.

Forecasters said the “historic” blizzards are likely to be the worst for four years as the powerful Nor’easter blows in today.

Coastal areas from South Carolina to Maine were warned to brace for damage.

Some areas were told to expect 18 inches of snow, and up to 30 inches in Massachusetts.

According to FlightAware, over 5,000 flights have been grounded between Friday and Sunday.

A total of 2,628 flights were grounded on Friday followed by 4,467 today.

Travel should be avoided in any of the areas where a blizzard or winter storm warning has been issued from Friday until Saturday, the National Weather Service advised.

Meanwhile, five states have declared states of emergency while 75 million people in the path of the storm are bracing for the extreme weather.

🔵 Read our Winter Storm Kenan live blog for the latest updates

The governors of New York, New Jersey, Maryland, Rhode Island and Virginia have warned residents to avoid the roads.

The Weather Prediction Center warns the temperatures are set to plummet on the East Coast while the storm is set to bring heavy rain and snow on Sunday.

It said on Saturday: “An area of ​​low pressure, currently off the Carolina coast, will rapidly intensify today as it makes its way up the eastern seaboard.

“Heavy snow and powerful winds will spread from the Mid-Atlantic coast to the Northeast coast throughout the day.

“The combination of heavy snow rates and strong winds will produce dangerous blizzard conditions across portions of the Mid-Atlantic and New England coasts, from Virginia’s Eastern Shore to eastern Maine, where Blizzard Warnings are in effect.”

CNN meteorologist Brandon Miller said: “This storm is likely to strengthen at a rate, and to an intensity, equivalent to only the most powerful hurricanes, so the high-end potential of this storm cannot be overstated.

“But with nor’easters, like in real estate, it will all come down to location, location, location.”

Currently, blizzard warnings have been issued for ten states, from the southern Delmarva Peninsula to eastern New Jersey, central and eastern Long Island, southeast Connecticut, Rhode Island, eastern Massachusetts, coastal New Hampshire, coastal and eastern Maine.

Boston, Providence, Portland, Maine, and Atlantic City, New Jersey, are expected to be among the places worst hit.

A winter storm warning has also been issued as far south as South Carolina.

New York City, Hartford, Philadelphia, and Norfolk, Virginia, can expect a combination of significant snowfall and strong winds.

Gust as high as 70mph could hit southeastern New England, while the New York tri-state area should expect gusts between 30 to 50 mph – bringing the threat of power outages.

High winds closer to the coast also bring fears of flooding as ocean water and waves could be driven inland.

The weather service office in Boston said: “Coastal flooding is a concern thanks to astronomically high tides on Saturday.

“The combination of strong northeast winds and high seas will bring storm surges that, if coinciding with high tide, would lead to minor or moderate coastal flooding.”

Boston Mayor Michelle Wu has issued a snow emergency that started on Friday.

She tweeted: “We’re declaring a snow emergency starting tonight at 9PM ahead of a winter storm forecasted to begin Saturday AM.

“You can expect between 18–24 inches of snow & winds as high as 50 MPH. Residents are encouraged to stay home.”

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