SEATTLE (AP) — A snowstorm that blanketed Seattle and western Washington state into Monday morning prompted widespread school closures, flight cancellations and power outages for more than 75,000 electrical utility customers, officials said.
The storm that started Sunday night caused a messy morning commute for Seattle residents and a winter storm warning remained in effect Monday for the greater Seattle area.
Forecasters said as much as 30 inches of snow could fall in the Cascade Range, and motorists were warned not to travel over Snoqualmie and White passes because of emergencies.
The storm hit Seattle after one storm after another has slammed Portland, Oregon. Forecasts for a major snowstorm for Portland turned out false as temperatures remained above freezing. But heavy rain fell in Portland and pushed some rivers toward flood stage.
Dozens of flights were canceled at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport because of snow and ice.
Alaska Airlines spokesperson Bobbie Egan said the carrier had trouble getting some employees to the airport and that passengers faced delays because workers had to de-ice jets.
“It’s taking 30-45 minutes to deice a single plane, which is a significant issue to get planes out,” Egan told KOMO. “It’s a messy scene and we apologize for that, but it’s a severe event.”