Southern New Englanders face cleanup from 3rd nor'easter

A worker shoveling snow is reflected in a building's plate glass window during a snowstorm, Tuesday, March 13, 2018, in Boston. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)

Storm cleanup and the restoration of power to the tens of thousands of residents and businesses without electricity was the focus Wednesday, one day after a fierce nor'easter lashed Southern New England with hurricane-force winds and heavy snow.

With spring tantalizingly in their grasp after the switch to daylight saving time, many were left shaking their heads -- and wielding shovels they had hoped would not be needed again -- after the third major storm in two weeks buried some towns beneath 2 feet of snow on Tuesday.

"The groundhog was right. Six more weeks of winter, and probably then some," Paul Knight, of Portland, Maine, said as snow accumulated on his eyebrows.

The National Weather Service said Derry, New Hampshire, got 25 inches. Burrillville, Rhode Island, and Kezar Falls, Maine, both got 20 inches. North Foster recorded just under 2 feet of snow

High winds and blowing snow led meteorologists to categorize the storm as a blizzard in parts of New England, including Boston. Gusts approached 70 mph on Cape Cod, the weather service said.

At one point, more than a quarter-million people were without power in Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island.

National Grid reported that about 4,200 homes and businesses in Rhode Island had no electricity Wednesday. About 900 National Grid customers in Bristol County, Massachusetts, had no power.

Eversource reported widespread outages on Cape Cod.

Utility companies said they would have extra crews out on Wednesday to restore power to those still without it.

Amtrak, which suspended all service on Tuesday between Boston and New York City, said most service between the two cities would resume on Wednesday. Service on many Acela trains was modified.

Road and air travel also was disrupted: Slick roads were blamed for at least one death in North Carolina, and the flight-tracking site FlightAware reported more than 1,500 canceled flights.

T.F. Green Airport reported that many departures scheduled before 9 a.m. were canceled. Most flights after 9 a.m. were listed as "on time."

Janice James' house in Osterville on Cape Cod was in the dark again after losing power for three days in the last storm. James and her four children spent the day eating baked goods she made before the storm and hoping the lights and heat would come back soon.

"We are freezing," the 39-year-old said.

In Rhode Island, the snow did not stop residents from getting to church. In East Greenwich, the Rev. Bernard Healey said he celebrated noon Mass with "two hearty souls" who came despite the nor'easter.

"If I lost power, we'd (still) celebrate Mass," Healey said. "We would just use more candles."

Robert F. Bukaty in Portland, Maine; Jennifer McDermott in Warwick, Rhode Island; and William J. Kole in Bourne, Massachusetts, contributed to this report.

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