NEW YORK (AP) — A mix of snow, sleet and freezing rain iced over roads, driveways and sidewalks from Delaware to New England on Tuesday, making for a slippery and messy morning commute.
New York City streets and sidewalks were a slushy mess Tuesday morning, with pedestrians forced to cross small ponds at street corners, and icy stretches of sidewalks were like Slip n' Slides. Cars threw up gobs of slush onto anyone standing too close to the street.
"This seems a little more like a New York winter," said David Cairns, trying to keep his dress shoes from getting wet while crossing the street in White Plains, N.Y. "Ice and slush and cold rain. It beats a blizzard."
Patricia Ricciardi, 49, used a tissue to wipe sludge off the cuffs of her slacks in a south Philadelphia subway station as she headed downtown to work at her city job.
"I don't want to go to work looking like I came from a garage instead," she said. "It's disgusting."
Tomoko Takushi, a graphic designer in Philadelphia, described her walk to work on the ice-glazed sidewalks as "terrifying."
The National Weather Service issued a winter storm advisory until 1 p.m. in New York City. The area got 1 to 2 inches of snow and sleet by early morning, followed by an inch of ice and finally light rain by late morning.
Hundreds of schools up and down the East Coast were closed or having delayed starts, including the Washington, D.C., area, eastern New York and southern Vermont. Flights were delayed throughout the region.
In New Jersey, Newark Liberty International Airport was open, but the airport's largest airline, Continental, said it halted its flights there because of freezing rain and snow. New York's LaGuardia Airport reported 1 hour and 35 minute delays on arriving flights in the late morning.
Dozens of flights at Dulles International and Reagan National were canceled and a few were delayed. Baltimore-Washington also had a few delays and cancelations.
Speed limits were lowered on highways from Delaware to New Jersey. Dozens of collisions were reported in Connecticut, including a crash between a southbound Amtrak train and a FedEx truck that became stuck at a Wallingford crossing.
Wallingford fire officials said none of the train's 90 passengers were injured, and the truck's driver was already out before the slow-moving train hit.
The eastern half of New York was expected to get up to 8 inches of snow, along with freezing rain and sleet. Coastal New Hampshire was bracing for power outages as ice built on power lines later Tuesday.
New Hampshire could get up to 10 inches of heavy snow, the weather service said. The most serious hours of the storm were expected to be late Tuesday and into Wednesday.
Rail service was also affected by ice. The Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority, which serves the Philadelphia area, reported delays on its commuter rail service and bus detours.
Metro-North Railroad, which serves commuters from Connecticut into New York City, reported up to 40-minute delays on some lines due to downed wires but it wasn't immediately clear whether the weather was the culprit.
After a Christmas weekend blizzard dumped 20 inches of snow on New York City, Mayor Michael Bloomberg was criticized for the slow cleanup. Up to 12 inches of snow blanketed the area again last week, but the city was prepared and the streets were quickly plowed.
Contributing to this report were Associated Press writers Erin Vanderberg and Jeff McMillan in Philadelphia and Jim Fitzgerald in White Plains.
Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.