As many as 65 million people across 18 states in the US ran the risk of being affected by a winter storm that ramped up in the US Great Plains, while a blizzard warning was sounded in Chicago, media reported Sunday.
According to a CNN report, Chicago could get as much as 15 inches (nearly 40 centimeters) of snow from the storm, which would affect its population of over 9 million.
The report added that the storm was headed for northeast US.
“The streets will stay plowed and passable. So people will be safe and secure,” Chicago Mayor, Rahm Emanuel, promised Sunday.
More than 350 pieces of equipment, including plows and salt spreaders, have been deployed across the city, officials said.
Up to a foot (nearly 31 centimeters) of snow was forecast in parts of Iowa, Illinois, Michigan and Wisconsin states. Multiple winter storm warnings are in place from the eastern part of Nebraska state and the South Dakota state to the Great Plains.
The storm will move east and affect major metropolitan areas such as New York and Boston on Monday, meteorologist Michael Guy said.
“New York City could see a wintry mix of precipitation… with a possibility of sleet and ice,” and Boston would “get another round of wintry weather with new snow accumulations from 10 to 12 inches (nearly 26 to 31 centimeters),” according to Guy.
More than 2,000 US flights were cancelled Sunday, many of them arriving at and departing from Chicago, according to flightaware.com, an online flight tracking service.
“Rain will be the problem across the southern portions of this storm system, with a possibility of scattered storms from east Texas to Mississippi Sunday as the storm moves east,” the meteorologist said.
A snowstorm started last Monday across the US northeast coast and ravaged the region, with millions of people living in New York City, Boston, Philadelphia and other metropolises in the area being affected.