New York City woke up to yet another winter storm Thursday. The snow came down in thick flakes, blanketing cars and sidewalks amid a 7-degree chill.
Eleven inches of snow fell in Central Park this morning, and wind has blown the powdery snow around, making visibility very poor.
The city has deployed around 1,700 snow plows and 450 salt spreaders overnight, a Department of Sanitation spokesman told the NY Daily News.
Snow day. pic.twitter.com/wTAJeouAX4— Caleb Crain (@caleb_crain) February 13, 2014
Mayor Bill De Blasio’s administration, which has raised the city's expected winter weather budget by 60 percent to $92 million, decided not to close schools on Thursday. The subway system was operating more or less normally during the morning commute, and most of the city’s streets had been plowed. The decision angered Michael Mulgrew, the head of the teacher’s union.
"Having students, parents and staff traveling in these conditions was unwarranted," Mulgrew said in a statement. "It was a mistake to open schools today."
But Lori Hiller, an elementary school social worker in Brooklyn who has two children in high school, told Reuters she was relieved that schools would remained open.
"We live in New York. It's February. There would be no reason to close schools," Hiller said.
The storm is expected to drop as much as a foot of snow on Philadelphia and Boston, and Baltimore has already been buried in 15 inches of snow. All federal offices in Washington, D.C., which is also blanketed in 11 inches of snow, have already been ordered closed.
Airports are an unpleasant place to be today: Over 5,000 domestic flights have been canceled and another 636 were delayed on Thursday, the flight-tracking website FlightAware.com told Reuters.