(PatriotWise.com) – The holiday weekend was marred by a deadly winter storm that killed at least 46 people, caused chaos throughout the country, and created a “potentially life-threatening hazard” for those traveling on Christmas.
According to the National Weather Service, a storm bringing a combination of life-threatening frigid temperatures and dangerous wind chills stretched from the Great Lakes to the Rio Grande.
As of Christmas afternoon, over 3,300 domestic and international flights had been canceled and another over 11,000 flights had been delayed.
By Christmas evening, at least 46 people in twelve states had died, with deaths reported in Colorado, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Tennessee, and Wisconsin.
The storm was especially devastating in the Buffalo, New York area, which had already been hit with heavy snow earlier this month.
By Christmas, at least 16 deaths were reported in the Buffalo area, with some found dead in their cars or on the sidewalks in snowbanks.
Hurricane-force winds and snow caused whiteout conditions in Buffalo, paralyzing emergency response efforts. Officials announced that the Buffalo-Niagara International Airport, which recorded 43 inches of snow by Sunday morning, would remain closed until Tuesday morning.
Massive blizzards, freezing rain, and bitter cold also knocked out electricity in areas throughout the country from Maine to Seattle, leaving hundreds of thousands of homes and businesses without power.
Throughout the weekend, power was restored nationwide. But by Sunday afternoon, over 60,000 customers throughout the country were still without power, including almost 34,000 in Maine alone.
On Saturday, National Grid customers in Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island, and Long Island were asked to reduce natural gas usage until Sunday afternoon.
The Tennessee Titans game in Nashville was delayed by an hour due to a planned power outage.
After the freezing temperatures burst waterlines in Jackson, Mississippi in the early hours of Christmas, city officials announced that residents must boil their drinking water.
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