The first official winter storm of 2022 is packing a cold punch that has left hundreds of thousands without power, closed schools, and Washington D.C. is shut down as residents hunker down and try to stay warm.
Washington D.C. could see accumulations of 5 to 8 inches. The Smithsonian Institution closed all 21 museums and the National Zoo due to the snowstorm.
Over 400,000 households in Virginia lost power as of 12:25 p.m., according to PowerOutage.US. Another 152,000 households in North Carolina, and over 200,000 across Maryland, Georgia, and South Carolina, also were without electricity.
Parts of north-central Virginia and southern Maryland have seen up to a foot. Another inch or two is possible.
An estimated 20 million Americans are currently under Winter storm alerts.
As of midday, over half a foot of snow was dumped in portions of Alabama, Tennessee, West Virginia, Maryland, New Jersey, Virginia, and North Carolina, according to the National Weather Service.
The West Coast is also dealing with winter weather.
Accumulations of up to two feet were forecast in northern California and parts of Oregon and Washington state, the National Weather Service said.
Blizzard conditions with barely any visibility were possible in some of the areas, and people were warned that travel could be “very difficult to impossible.”