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Snowstorm Causes Headaches For Post-Thanksgiving Travelers


A major snowstorm is causing headaches for post-Thanksgiving travelers on the East Coast. Annie Ropeik of New Hampshire Public Radio has more.

ANNIE ROPEIK, BYLINE: The first winter storm in the Northeast started its Thanksgiving weekend on the West Coast. From there, it moved to the Midwest, where it dumped close to 2 feet of snow. By Sunday, it was on the East Coast, just when passengers like Josh Navarro were trying to make it home after the holiday.

JOSH NAVARRO: Everything was looking pretty good. I thought I was going to be able to escape the wintry weather and get there right before it gets all nasty and messy out there. But I guess I didn't make it.

ROPEIK: Navarro is a reporter for a TV station in Rochester, N.Y. He spent more than 10 hours on Sunday stuck at the airport in Philadelphia - his layover after spending Thanksgiving with family in Florida. Hundreds of flights were canceled or delayed due to the snow that fell starting Sunday. National Weather Service meteorologist Maura Casey says it's not over yet.

MAURA CASEY: Don't let your guard down on Monday 'cause it's quite possible we could receive another, you know, round or two of heavier snow coming again Monday night into Tuesday.

ROPEIK: Ted Kitchens is director of the airport in Manchester, N.H. He says his crews are plowing runways round the clock, but they're still seeing delays from other airports.

TED KITCHENS: This has done quite a number for travel across the country.

ROPEIK: Kitchens says travelers should make sure to check with their airlines about the status of their flights and check road conditions before heading to the airport. And he says...

KITCHENS: Just have a little extra ounce of patience (laughter) packed on your carry-on.

ROPEIK: That patience was tested for Josh Navarro, the TV reporter who got stuck on his layover in Philadelphia. His first connection canceled. While waiting, he bought a scarf at an airport store. Hours later, he lined up a flight to Charlotte, N.C. There, the plan was to connect back to Rochester after another layover.

NAVARRO: I'm just ready to get back. I'm supposed to go right back to work (laughter) right when I get off the plane.

ROPEIK: He says all his winter gear for going out and covering the storm was still back at his apartment, which he thought would probably be snowed in by the time he got home.

For NPR News, I'm Annie Ropeik in New Hampshire. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Annie Ropeik reports on state economy and business issues for all Indiana Public Broadcasting stations, from a home base of WBAA. She has lived and worked on either side of the country, but never in the middle of it. At NPR affiliate KUCB in Alaska's Aleutian Islands, she covered fish, oil and shipping and earned an Alaska Press Club Award for business reporting. She then moved 4,100 miles to report on chickens, chemicals and more for Delaware Public Media. She is originally from the D.C. suburb of Silver Spring, Maryland, but her mom is a Hoosier. Annie graduated from Boston University with a degree in classics and philosophy. She performs a mean car concert, boasts a worryingly encyclopedic knowledge of One Direction lyrics and enjoys the rule of threes. She is also a Hufflepuff.