PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — A storm brought snow, sleet and freezing rain to the Northeast, but reassured wary residents that winter had actually begun.
Parts of northern New England got 4 to 6 inches of snow on Tuesday, with Carrabassett Valley in western Maine coming in at a high of 10 inches.
Clouds with possibly some light snow or freezing rain are expected on Wednesday, said Eric Schwibs, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Gray, Maine. But he proclaimed: “The big storm is over.”
The weather made for a sloppy mess in parts of metro Boston, where memories linger of last winter’s record-breaking snowfall. But as Fernando Gonterman waited for a train from Harvard Square to his job at Massachusetts General Hospital, he was unfazed.
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“Weather is weather. Just deal with it, right?” he said.
In snow-loving Vermont, Chassidy Byrd, the assistant manager at a gas station and convenience store in Plainfield, said the storm returned the state to a sense of normal.
Without any snow, “it didn’t feel like Vermont,” she said.
Meteorologists say the storm that chilled the Northeast is linked to the same system that produced deadly tornadoes in the Midwest beginning Saturday, then brought heavy snow, ice, rain, flooding and blustery winds as it moved toward the Great Lakes. That storm system killed dozens, including many who drowned in floodwaters and others caught up in tornadoes.
Schwibs, of the National Weather Service, said the Northeast storm was “nothing near what we could have had,” and those who drove slowly were able to maneuver any kind of vehicle through the snow and slush.
“For an early start, it wasn’t that bad,” he said.
Forecasters predicted an inch or less in parts of southern New England before the storm turned to rain and sleet, while northern regions would see more. Central New York racked up 1 to 4 inches of snow while northern New York had 3 to 7 inches.
There were no major traffic problems, but some vehicles got stuck in the mounting snow around rush hour. Traffic was mostly light because schools were closed for Christmas vacation and many businesses were closed.
In Andover, Massachusetts, police say a man pulled an unloaded gun on a snow plow driver after nearly crashing into the plow. The man’s lawyer said his client was attacked first and pulled out the gun in self-defense.
Portland resident Aaron Lovely said he walked through the worst of the snow for about 20 minutes to get to his job at a downtown record store, which was mostly empty late Tuesday morning. He said the trek through the snow “wasn’t the worst,” and the winter’s lack of weather so far was perhaps more unnerving.
“It was kind of weird that there wasn’t snow until now,” Lovely said. “It’s about time.”
Associated Press writers Collin Binkley in Boston; Chris Carola in Albany, New York; Reese Dunklin in Blue Ridge, Texas; Lisa Rathke in Plainfield, Vermont; David Sharp in Portland, Maine; and Rik Stevens in Concord, New Hampshire, contributed to this report.