Home / National News / Winter Storm Creates Treacherous Travel for Midwest and Northeast With Ice and Snow


(NEW YORK) — A winter storm that is sweeping across the country with snow and ice is creating dangerous travel conditions from the Midwest to the Northeast, where hundreds of accidents were reported overnight.

The weather system has blanketed much of the country with fresh snow, from the Pacific Northwest through the Great Lakes region and up to New England. But warmer air moving into the Midwest and Northeast is changing the snowfall to rain and sleet, leaving roads and runways in these areas slick and icy.

Hundreds of accidents were reported overnight on roadways from the Midwest to the Northeast.

More than 285 crashes resulting in at least 27 injuries were reported in Minnesota on Friday after the area received 3 to 5 inches of fresh snow, according to the Minnesota State Patrol.

Meanwhile, roadways in Indiana were jammed with traffic due to icy conditions. The Indianapolis Police Department said it responded to nearly 200 accidents that injured 36 people between 10 p.m. Friday and 4 a.m. local time. Parts of Interstates 465, 65 and 70 were shut down in the region due to the high amount of crashes.

There were 45 crashes reported overnight in northern Virginia, according to the Virginia State Police. An accident involving 23 vehicles at the 50-mile marker on the Capital Beltway, which surrounds Washington, D.C., left at least four people injured, police said.

About a mile north at the 49-mile marker, Virginia State Police found a dead man on the ground near the northbound shoulder. At this stage in the ongoing death investigation, police said it appears the man was involved in the massive pile-up and had walked away from his disabled vehicle.

The icy conditions even made travel dangerous for emergency crews in Virginia. A fire engine on its way to an accident on Interstate 66 slid off the road on Route 50, according to the Fairfax County Police Department.

In Maryland, there was a 55-vehicle pileup that involved at least one tractor trailer on Interstate 95 just south of Baltimore. At least two people were killed and 11 others were taken to a hospital –- three of them were seriously hurt and nine had non-life threatening injuries, according to the Baltimore Fire Department.

Local agencies in the Midwest and Northeast urged drivers to stay off the roads this morning.

So far, there have been at least 1,313 flight cancellations and 1,706 flight delays within, into or out of the United States. There were 929 cancellations and 4,060 delays within, into or out of the country on Friday, according to data collected by FlightAware.

The Midwest can expect to receive an additional 1 to 4 inches of fresh snow along with more ice as the moisture transitions to a mix of snow, sleet and freezing. The snowfall is expected to end Sunday morning, according to ABC News meteorologists.

The highest snowfall accumulations for today are expected in the Northeast from northern Connecticut to upstate New York, where more than 4 inches is possible. Much of New England could see 2 to 4 inches of fresh snow today. The region will warm up by Sunday morning and any remaining snowfall will turn to rain, meteorologists said.

Meanwhile, the tail end of the weather system in the Southwest is bringing snow to the mountains and gusty winds to the valleys.

An arctic blast will sweep in to the Midwest region Sunday morning as the winter storm moves out.

The frigid cold will make its way to the Northeast region Monday.

Although the wintry precipitation is forecast to end by Sunday, ABC News meteorologists predict an even colder blast of air will surge southward into the central U.S. and make its way to the northeast by Monday. Wind chills, or feels like temperatures, could plunge as low as -41 degrees Fahrenheit in the upper Midwest.

“This is extremely dangerous weather,” ABC News senior meteorologist Daniel Manzo said. “These are bone-chilling cold temperatures.”

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