Washington: The eastern United States braced on Friday for a blizzard that could bury Washington under more snow than it has seen in nearly a century, before moving on to New York.
Washington and neighboring cities including Baltimore could see up to two feet of snow accumulate in a short time as a result of the monster storm, which was also expected to generate fierce winds and icy rain in some area, forecasters said.
Heavy snow was expected across at least 15 states, according to the Weather Channel.
The National Weather Service (NWS) issued a blizzard warning for Washington, which was due to see first snowfall on Saturday, and said New York could catch the tail end of the storm as the weekend progresses.
"Heavy snow and blowing snow will cause dangerous conditions and will be a threat to life and property," NWS warned in its Washington bulletin. "Travel is expected to be severely limited if not impossible during the height of the storm on Friday night and Saturday."
NWS director Louis Uccellini said the system had "the potential of being an extremely dangerous storm that could affect over 50 million people."
"We are talking about a potentially paralyzing storm that is already setting up," Uccellini told reporters on a conference call.
Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser issued a state of emergency which will allow for access to "federal resources when we need them," she said during a press conference, in which she also called off school tomorrow.