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Continuing Coverage of the Northeast Snow Storm
Aired February 09, 2013 - 01:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN ANCHOR: Top of the hour here, 1:00 in the morning East Coast time.
Hello from the CNN World Headquarters, I'm Brooke Baldwin. I want to welcome our viewers in the United States and all around the world as we cover this massive northeast blizzard, a blizzard now. Many, many trees are down. Power is out for hundreds of thousands of people here.
And as we show you some of these pictures, let me just tell you what we know now. More than half a foot of snow has already fallen in Massachusetts. That state is also dealing with widespread power outages and across the region, more than a half million homes and businesses are without electricity.
To New York, look at this. Can't see much of the skyline anymore. Visibility much, much worse here as, of course, it's dark and the snow is still falling here. This is really, this is the worst of it, this is the third quarter, to use Chad's analogy. If this is a football game, third quarter, minute to go.
We learned that someone was killed in a storm-related traffic accident in Poughkeepsie, in New York. A state of emergency is in place. Rail service has been suspended from Manhattan to upstate. In Rhode Island, snow there. Similar story. Been stacking up as fast as 3 inches an hour here; up to 2 feet of snow is predicted along with winds possibly topping 60 miles an hour.
I'm in the CNN Weather Center, where we're watching the snowstorm move across the northeast. This is where our weather folks, our producers are able to get the up-to-date information so we can pass it along to you, as we will be all night long.
I should point out, I hope you stay with me in the wee hours of the morning. We'll be on until 5:00 this morning with, of course, all the latest information for you, the updated conditions and we have a team of reporters and crews fanned out across the entire northeast region.
Here are a couple of them for you. Far left, meteorologist Indra Petersons is in Boston; Ali Velshi in Cape Cod, in Dennis Port, Massachusetts; Alison Kosik in Manhattan and Chad Myers been tracking the storm for us here at the CNN Weather Center.
So let me begin in Boston tonight. Look at these cars, covered. Logan Airport, by the way, measuring one wind gust at 76 miles per hour. Folks, that is two miles above hurricane force. Indra Petersons, in the thick of it as we mentioned, joins me from a very snowy Boston. I don't know if you have the wind -- the measuring the wind -- how have conditions changed since the last time we talked?
There it is.
INDRA PETERSONS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: You know, It's funny because every time I stand here and I think things are OK, you know, not too bad, and then one of these gusts just blows by, I mean, and it's just unbearable. I mean, think about just ice pellets, just pelleting your face, 40, 50, even 70 miles per hour.
As you mentioned, Logan Airport is only two miles or so from here. And they had a 76-mile-per-hour wind gust. So now imagine that with ice pelting your face. That's what we're dealing with right now. This is definitely right in the thick of the blizzard. We're talking about snowfall rates, yes, obviously 1 to 2 inches per hour.
At some points in time we have even seen 3 to 4 inches per hour. So we see visibility switch up based upon that. Now of course the downside of this, we know so many people are without power. In Massachusetts alone, about 350,000 people are without power right now. In the northeast, over a half a million people are without power.
Now keep in mind, imagine temperatures now, it's nighttime, we're talking about 19 degrees, the wind chill, below zero, -1 degrees to be exact. So definitely a very cold night. It's not sure the power, how long it will take to get back on.
Plenty of crews are out there on the roads as we speak, trying to clear the roads, about 3,600 units of machinery (ph) right now are doing what they can, but it's pretty hard to keep up with this. I mean, just keep in mind how fast this is going. We still have many hours to go.
And even as the system tries to clear out by late tomorrow or today depending on how you want to look at it, we're going to be talking about these winds still picking up, so that visibility is still going to be very poor and it looks like travel in the city is really going to be at a nonstop.
We've heard, for the most part, people are actually hearing the warnings. You know, they're not out on the roads, they're doing what they should be, they're staying inside, and that's good news.
Of course, we have heard of some semi-trucks jackknifed on the roads, but overall, not hearing too many reports, of course, other than those power outages. At this point in time, I think that's the worst thing that we're seeing.
BALDWIN: Yes, I'm seeing some lights behind you, not just those Christmas lights it looks like, but some car, as we know, Governor Deval Patrick said no, you know, there's a travel ban in place here in Massachusetts.
I talked to the mayor of Boston, Mayor Menino, earlier this afternoon. And look, you know, they know the deal in Boston. You cannot have your parked car on that street or else you get towed.
You mentioned some of the people really heeding the warnings. Have you seen people out and about there in the snow? I mean, are they enjoying it?
PETERSONS: Well, ironically, I was talking to Dave, our executive producer in the weather office, and he mentioned that, we know, we had -- he saw someone today in shorts and goggles going for a run. I'm going to guess he's a local. I don't know.
BALDWIN: That's Boston for you.
PETERSONS: (Inaudible) thing to do. We had a lot of people out here playing with their dogs. So you know, but generally speaking, I'm looking around right now. It is quiet. I'm obviously not seeing anyone, and a couple cars here behind me. Again, can't tell if they're with the media or not.
But generally speaking, I will say it does seem like people are staying indoors. Of course, it's also, you know, after midnight.
BALDWIN: All is quiet, which is a good thing, Indra Petersons, thank you so much for standing out there in it. We appreciate that.
Also out there in the thick of things is Ali Velshi.
Ali, I've just seen there is actually now a Twitter handle created, @SaveAliVelshi. So people are --they're watching you. They want you saved. We're glad you're out there, you want to be out there. You are in the Cape in Massachusetts. And tell me, how is that wind right now?
ALI VELSHI, CNN HOST: You know, again, for the moment, for the moment, it died down. While you were talking to Indra, it's exactly what she said. It seems OK for a couple of minutes, and then all of a sudden a gust comes through.
And it is -- it is that sharp, icy snow. It's not hail. I -- somebody actually tweeted me and said I referred to it as little ice pellets, and that's hail. No, this isn't hail. This is just sharp icy snow. I think the SaveAliVelshi, by the way, is save Ali Velshi from wearing that stupid hat. But it's just the only way to protect yourself from what's going on here.
The power is out again in Dennis Port, Massachusetts, which is halfway down the southern coast of Cape Cod. So another 30 miles out east, you get to Chatham, which is the bottom right corner of Cape Cod. The power keeps coming on and going out, which means the system is trying to fix itself. There are many people trying to reroute -- route power, but it's pretty sophisticated the way electricity travels.
So when it goes out and comes back again, it doesn't mean there's a crew fixing it. There are no crews out, particularly those guys in the buckets. That's not going to happen in this kind of wind. Not going to happen tomorrow morning, either.
When they start fixing power, it's going to go to critical places first. So if you're losing power, you know, we may -- we have 12 hours of this.
You might be 20 hours before you get crews out there. Might be two days, so this is a big concern with -- of the more than 540,000 customers -- and that's customers, not people -- count houses or buildings or stores, of the more than 540,000 that have lost power, 300,000 are in Massachusetts.
And remember, that number is probably about an hour old. It updates every now and then. So we're probably way above that. That's serious, given the temperatures that Indra was talking about. I mean, it's just really -- the regular temperature's not all that cold, but this wind chill is making it feel a lot colder. That's going to become an issue overnight.
But for the moment, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, you can't be on the road. I mean, just think about that.
VELSHI: I-95, which goes from the northeast all the way to Florida, it's just closed. Nobody can be on it. So this is an issue. It's not even like a normal power outage where you go somewhere where somebody has power. You can't go anywhere.
So this is -- this is where it has that serious turn. If you're well equipped in your home and you have got heat or you have prepared for it and you're watching this on TV or you're sleeping, everything is going to be OK, and I think for the vast majority of people, that's going to be the case, but there are going to be some people who are having a rough night of it.
BALDWIN: Ali, let me just ask you this, as you talk about people, you know, warm in their own homes, how many people -- I mean, the Cape is a beautiful place in the summer, but how many people are there right around this time of year?
VELSHI: Yes. Well, the estimate is about a quarter million of the entire Cape in the -- year-round. Probably gets up to 600,000 or 700,000 in the summer, particularly in areas like this, such beautiful area. But a couple hours ago, I was doing a report into Anderson's show and two guys walked by because they lived about a quarter mile away. They had cabin fever and wanted to see what it was like.
And he says he's a hardy New Englander -- here's that gust, by the way, that I was talking about.
A hardy New Englander, spent his entire life here. He said this storm doesn't compare to the storm of '78 that everybody talks about. But it's bad. And he said the wind is just biting. It's really, really hard. So they walked around.
The weather was not like this when he was walking around. This has become much worse. Hopefully Chad can tell us whether this is the worst of it or it gets worse, but this wind right now, completely calm. Moments ago, a gust that felt to me like it was in the high 50s. But right now, it feels like there's no wind at all.
BALDWIN: We'll ask Chad. I'm staring at him right now.
Ali Velshi, thank you so much.
Meantime, in New Jersey, Governor Chris Christie, he is telling folks this is a complex storm and in vintage Chris Christie fashion, he's very matter of fact.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. CHRIS CHRISTIE (R), N.J.: The overall safety message here is, as always, an obvious one. Stay home. Avoid unnecessary travel. If you're out there in the storm, stay behind salt trucks and plows and drive slowly. Accelerate, brake and turn slowly to avoid losing control of your vehicle. Just generally be smart and be careful.
And if you can be off the roads, that would be even more helpful. It allows our vehicles to be able to clear, salt, and sand the roads much more efficiently and effectively and it keeps you out of harm's way. We're ready, we're prepared to be able to make the roads and the bridges and the railways passable for our citizens.
But we would hope that tonight into tomorrow morning during the brunt of the storm that you would all just take the opportunity to stay home with family and friends.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BALDWIN: Hopefully a lot of you have been heeding that warning. And we have seen Chris Christie over the past week. He's been doing tours, talking to victims of Sandy. Keep in mind, that happened just back in the end of October. So many people still trying to get back on their feet.
We can now call this storm fatal. We have now heard that there has been some sort of vehicle-related accident. Don't have a ton of information on it right now, but this is Poughkeepsie, New York. Poughkeepsie, New York, one person has died, storm related vehicle accident. We're working on getting more information. And as soon as we do, I'm promise we'll pass it along.
Let me take you now to Alison Kosik in New York, in Manhattan.
And, Alison, set the scene for me.
ALISON KOSIK, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: We've got a nice icy snow coming down. You know what, it is kind of a winter wonderland. You look out here, this is really usually, what they're seeing here. We're at the Circle, at Columbus Circle, Brooke.
Usually on a Friday night, yes, we're in the wee hours of the morning, but this is usually packed with cars. Do you see a car here? I don't even see cabs going, even though --
BALDWIN: And there are normally so many cabs there, right? Columbus Circle?
KOSIK: Oh, yes. And usually -- this is New York City, come on, it's Friday night. There's no one out. It's desolate, it's a ghost town. So people are staying in tonight except for the snowplow here that's coming our way. I'm going to step out of the way -- Ken, go ahead, so you don't get run over. Yes, it's like a ghost town here, though. It is kind of eerie. But it's also kind of nice. It's a winter wonderland.
And how often do you have New York where it's so quiet except for that snowplow going by? You could almost hear a pin drop.
BALDWIN: Kind of quiet, kind of peaceful, good to see he's keeping the sidewalks there at TimeWarner Center clean. Alison Kosik, thank you. We'll come back to you.
I want to bring in Chad Myers here as we sit in the Weather Center.
Briefly, let's just get a recap on what happened, Long Island Expressway. People trapped. What more do you know?
CHAD MYERS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Well, if you look at this map behind me, up to New York has 22 inches of snow already. So this is Suffolk County, Suffolk between -- you know, you're talking about Islip and then all the way out toward Montauk. We've known that this area was getting pounded by snow. And that's where -- at least the slow-down; we don't know that there was a wreck.
We just know that cars were stopped on the freeway, and even the fire department couldn't get them because the snow was so deep. And I'm thinking probably because the drifts are so deep. So snowmobiles going out to get them. That was from the emergency manager of Suffolk County.
BALDWIN: Snowmobiles have gone out (inaudible)? OK.
Is the worst of this over?
MYERS: I think it's close. I think the low pressure is as close to Ali as it's going to get. It's almost like when I watch Ali and the wind comes and goes, it's almost like watching him in a hurricane, where an outer band will come by and the wind will pick up, and then the outer band will go -- will just leave and the wind completely stops. That's exactly what it's like. That's what it feels like to me.
And that low will be close to him for the next three hours. By 4:00 am, 5:00 am, it starts to move away. The wind for him shifts direction. You'll start to see him get wind in his face.
So he's going to be shifting direction because, just like a hurricane, the wind is going to start to move as the low moves away. And I think that's when the snow gets the heaviest, across parts of Maine, into Massachusetts and then also into Rhode Island. And then by 11 o'clock in the morning, it's all gone.
BALDWIN: What about -- since we're talking about Ali and we see these pictures in terms of surge, in terms of coastal flooding, is that a huge concern?
MYERS: You know, there was some surge, there was flooding in the Sandy Hook area, in part of the New Jersey area, but that was because of wind that had been blowing that water for days in that direction.
I think the only real threat we have is that a high tide like into Boston Harbor, into Gloucester, and on up in there.
And those are kind of rocky shores in some spots and kind of -- you'll see the waves, they'll smash onshore, it will be a beautiful picture of the plume flying, especially in the wind, but I don't believe we're going to get a massive tidal surge anywhere along that coast and flood thousands of homes. (Inaudible) see that.
BALDWIN: (Inaudible) I don't want to talk about that and I don't want to talk about flooding.
Chad, thank you very much.
And coming up here as we continue to cover this massive blizzard encroaching upon so many of you in the New England, northeast area, we will talk to someone with the American Red Cross, talk about how they're certainly out and about helping people, people in need today, tomorrow and in the coming days. Special coverage of this blizzard after this.
BALDWIN: I hope you are safe and sound and cozy and warm here as you are watching our overnight coverage of this blizzard in the northeast. These are pictures of the snow coming down. This is Boston. You see the time, 1:17 in the morning. And we want to talk about, look, people, they're going to need help, obviously.
If you're out in it, you shouldn't be, but the Red Cross is there to help you. They have shelters open for those seeking refuge from this blizzard.
In fact, Sara Smith is on the phone with me. She's with the American Red Cross in Providence, Rhode Island.
And Sara, I have seen the pictures from Providence. I mean, it is just totally white there. Tell me what kinds of calls have you all been getting?
SARA SMITH, AMERICAN RED CROSS: Hi, Brooke. Thanks so much for having me.
Yes, we are -- we are responding to the storm. And it is a challenge as you can imagine. We do have some shelters open on the Cape in Massachusetts and also on Long Island. And we have volunteers, and we also have supplies in place and ready to go on standby if emergency officials say it's time to open more shelters throughout Rhode Island and other areas if necessary.
BALDWIN: While I have you, while people are listening, just run through the common sense things that you want to pass along to people so hopefully they will not be calling you.
SMITH: Well, you know, if they're home without power, obviously, the biggest thing tonight is to keep warm. And we want people to do that safely. So maybe the best thing to do is gather everybody into one room. It's time to have a family night. Stay warm, get some extra blankets. Maybe some layered clothing for the evening.
You never, ever want to use your oven or stove to heat your home. That's a dangerous thing to do. If you're going to use a generator, you need to be very, very careful that it has enough exhaust and that, you know, it hasn't been covered in snow so that then it will back up into your home and have a carbon monoxide situation. You need to be very careful with that.
Also if you have no power, you don't want to use candles. You know, with the wind the way it is, tree branches are falling. They could -- a window could break. Then you have wind and an open flame and a fire. That's a much more dangerous situation. So we definitely suggest flashlights. Or maybe your kids have toys that light up. You know, something fun even --
BALDWIN: That's a great -- that's good advice.
SMITH: -- (inaudible) something battery powered.
BALDWIN: Great advice, Sara.
Let me ask you, as you talk about these shelters that are open, obviously they're for folks who may not have power, wouldn't have heat. I can't help but also think about people who are homeless who are out, who do not have anywhere to go, do not have shelter to seek.
How are you handling that?
SMITH: Well, I mean, the emergency shelters that are open, you know, like I said, on the Cape and in Long Island, you know, they'll take anybody that needs a place to stay. A lot of the cities in our region and across the affected area had, you know, been out there, I'm sure, even over the past few months because of the cold, with different kind of outreach to the homeless as far as places that they can go.
BALDWIN: OK. Sara Smith with the American Red Cross. Sara, we wish you luck. It's going to be a long couple of days, I know, for you and your crews and we appreciate all the work that you will be doing. Sara, thank you so much, in Providence, Rhode Island.
And so many of you, and we're appreciative of the pictures and the videos, your IReports that you're giving us, helping us. You are our eyes on the ground, in addition to our CNN crews. We're going to run through some of these iReports on the other side of this break. Stay right with me.
BALDWIN: Back here live, so many of you are our eyes and ears on the ground as we continue covering this blizzard in the northeast. And we're getting all kinds of just amazing video, pictures coming in from our iReporters.
Amy La Porte is here with me in studio at 1:24 in the morning.
Thank you for doing this with me.
AMY LA PORTE: I love monitoring Twitter. And I actually get to be paid for it. So --
BALDWIN: The tweets are flying. I love getting them and reading the in the commercial.
Begin with what kinds of pictures do you get?
LA PORTE: OK. Well, we're getting a lot of the empty shelf picture we see, you know, at Walmart, we've got this picture here. This is a Walmart in Quincy, Massachusetts. Bryan Garrett (ph) sent this in to us. You know, it's a case of the old Boy Scouts motto, be prepared, I think, for these folks. I mean, they know.
BALDWIN: They apparently are.
LA PORTE: They know.
BALDWIN: There's nothing left.
LA PORTE: That's the bread aisle. So you know, it's the usual. People stock up on bread, they stock up on water.
BALDWIN: Bread, milk, beer.
LA PORTE: Right. That leads me to the next one.
New York, check this picture out. That right there is for a wine shop. Those people are braving the conditions. They've got their big jackets on, their scarves. They're lining up for wine. I guess it's a case of, you know --
BALDWIN: Blizzard parties.
LA PORTE: Yes, blizzard parties.
LA PORTE: Making the best of a bad situation.
LA PORTE: Right? We've got this one guy, we have got this tweet I want to show you. He knows what it's all about. "If you live around the Boston area like I do, be safe, stay warm and drink beer I guess." That really sums up the feeling.
BALDWIN: Did you see the snowball fight? We had a snowball fight on earlier, Julian Cummings shot it in Boston. I mean, look, people are -- the bars are beginning to empty.
LA PORTE: And they know they've got the nation's eyes on them. You know, got reporters out there in the street. They're like, you know what, why not? Let's have fun with this. But we do want to warn people, we want these iReports, but you know, stay safe when you're out there, because I want to show you this video we got.
This was Boston. Check out that sign there. It says blizzard warning. Avoid all travel, right, as you see the cars whizzing by. People there clearly not heeding the warning.
BALDWIN: Not yet. Hopefully they did after 4 o'clock in the afternoon when you couldn't drive in a couple of these states.
LA PORTE: Hopefully they did.
So, you know, we want to see you guys sending in your video, your pictures. You guys are the eyes of the storm here. Be safe, you know, stay off the roads, but if you have got some amazing pictures out there, we want to see them.
BALDWIN: Amy La Porte, thank you. Just go to ireport.com. Thank you, thank you, @AmyLaPorteCNN, @BrookeBCNN. We're reading your tweets. We thank you for it.
Coming up, we're going to take you to the hardest hit areas of this storm as we continue our special coverage in the overnight hours of the northeast blizzard. Back after this.
BALDWIN: Right now, up to 50 million Americans are in the path of this blizzard as it is plowing through much of the northeast and New England right now.
Look at these pictures with me. More than a foot and a half of snow has already fallen in parts of Massachusetts. That state is also dealing with widespread power outages. Those numbers keep changing. Across the region, more than a half million homes and businesses are without electricity.
Let me take you to New York. You can see here the worst of the storm hitting in these overnight hours a short time ago. We did learn that one person was killed in what is being described as a storm-related traffic accident. That's all we know so far. A storm-related vehicle accident, that's in Poughkeepsie, New York.
A state of emergency is in place across the state. Rail service has been suspended from Manhattan to upstate, and in Rhode Island, snow. Stacking up there, fast as 3 inches an hour, we have been hearing. Up to 2 feet of snow is predicted along with the winds possibly topping 60 miles an hour.
And in Boston, wind gusts at one point, they caught a wind gust at Logan Airport, 76 miles an hour. That's faster than a hurricane. We could see snow drifts towering 6, 7 feet tall possibly.
Indra Petersons in the midst of it for us at 1:30 in the morning, as it is continuing to fall, in the wind, just not very fun for you. How is it going out there?
PETERSONS: Good thing I'm a weather geek, right, because I actually do love this stuff. I want to show you right now, right, I want to show you our yardstick. You know, we're measuring how much snow we've gotten right here at the Boston Harbor. And you know, right now, I'm only seeing 9 inches in this spot. Maybe I got to move I around a little bit. But generally speaking, we're not seeing a foot just yet.
But either way, we are seeing some heavy snowfall out here. We're still seeing 1 to 2 inches per hour, at some points, even 3 or 4 inches per hour. And you mentioned Logan Airport. That's only about 2 miles away from here. So yes, these gusts will pick up out of nowhere. And with 76 miles per hour. So try being pelted by little ice crystals, 50, 60, even 70 miles per hour. That's what it feels like to be standing --
PETERSONS: -- right here. Currently right now, ah, yes, that's no biggie, right? We're going to show you once again, I keep love showing this customs tower because it's the best way to tell how heavy the snow is falling. When you see visibility drop less than a quarter of a mile, you know you have the heavy snowfall.
That tower is less than a quarter of a mile away. And right now it is pretty hard to see. I can still see it. But there have been times, even standing right here, we haven't seen anything at all.
Now I do want to mention, I talked to a gentleman earlier today, who said he was standing right here in the 1978 blizzard, and he told me, now, we see the wharf here is just about 90 feet away from me.
He told me at that point in time, the winds were so strong, that the water had actually gone over the chains, even to where I'm standing. So he says it was actually worse then. So a little bit of perspective from someone that was here back then. I wasn't even born. So I can't give you that.
But I do want to talk about the downside of this, you know, it is cold. We're talking about temperatures, 19 degrees, the wind chill down to -1. And there are so many people right now without power. In the Northeast, 500,000 people are currently without power in these freezing temperatures. In Massachusetts alone, 350,000 people are without power. And we're now hearing that the Plymouth nuclear power plant is also out of power, but they are on backup generators so they're not saying that it's an emergency, but 90 percent of the area around that power plant now also out of power as well. So that's what you could expect.
Obviously, we're talking about some of these hurricane force winds, this heavy, wet snow, and like is said, this is going be here for a while, even when this starts to back out of here by tomorrow, these winds are still going to be blowing. So all of the fresh snow on the ground will continue to do this. And everyone hopefully stays indoors for the remainder of it.
BALDWIN: All right, weather geek. We appreciate you enjoying yourself out there, as we'll keep coming back to you with the overnight hours here as we cover this storm. We're talking -- you mentioned, you know, the wind, the power outages. Want to just give you an update on some of those folks who we heard were trapped on the Long Island Expressway. Let me just glance down and read this note.
So here is what we know now. This is from Suffolk County Emergency Management office confirming that crews are clearing off the cars on the LIE, the Long Island Expressway around exit 59 and 63.
A spokesman confirmed that there have been some people stuck in those cars but he does not know how many, and as far as he knows, there are no medical situations or emergencies beyond simply being stuck and not being able to get off the expressway. So that's the latest we have on that.
Want to take you, though, back to Boston, to -- actually, full transparency, he's a dear friend of mine, that was a professor of mine at UNC Chapel Hill and is now at Suffolk University. He is Dana Rosengard; lives in Southie, South Boston.
Dana, you with me?
DANA ROSENGARD, SUFFOLK UNIVERSITY: I am.
BALDWIN: Hello, my friend. How are you?
ROSENGARD: I am very well. How are you, dear?
BALDWIN: You know, I'm a lot warmer than a lot of people I know, who are in New England right now. But tell me, you live in Southie, how is the snow? We have some of your pictures. Talk me through what you've been seeing.
ROSENGARD: Well, just for you, I just went out about 15 minutes ago and looked at more snow. And had a harder time even finding my car. But I am here to report that -- there you see my car, I think you've got the picture up there.
It's now even more covered, obviously, two hours later, but the 24- hourconvenience store at the end of my block is open. It is open, the lights are on, and if you need milk or juice, you can get there and get some. BALDWIN: I was reading your note where you were walking -- you were walking from the Back Bay back home. Were there a lot of people out walking earlier?
ROSENGARD: There weren't too many people. And I looked it up. It was a mile and a half. And Google Maps said it should have taken me 32 minutes to get home. And it really took me that same amount of time, even in this weather.
There were a few people out. Mostly those people walking dogs, to be honest with you. And it was a little eerie, because I was walking down the middle of the plowed street because I couldn't even see where the sidewalks were.
BALDWIN: That's a word we keep hearing -- eerie -- to describe what people are seeing.
You sent us some video. We're going to play this video. Tell me what we're going to see?
ROSENGARD: Oh, gosh, well, you know, I shot that at the last minute, about 15 minutes ago.
BALDWIN: There's a plow.
ROSENGARD: Yes, the plows are out. And I saw four of them in the whole half block that I went by. You can see, there's my -- I live in that church, which is now condominiums. And they are out, trying to stay out, ahead of this clean-up effort.
I think that's why all of the cars were ordered off the streets and all the drivers were ordered off the roads, as I know you've been reporting. And you know, you can walk down the streets, no problem.
BALDWIN: Final question to you, and I'll let you go, and I appreciate you staying up and doing this with me. I mean, look, you're a Boston boy, born and raised. How does this compare to storms in the past?
ROSENGARD: Well, I remember the big blizzard of 1978, which is the second largest amount of snow we had from any one storm here in Boston. Obviously, 35 years ago so the memories are a little gray. But be that as it may, you know, we can deal with this. It's really not a big deal. You can see my front door there, big heavy doors. It was hard to pull them open against the snow that had already piled up there.
But if you have the right boots and you have the right gear, it's actually not that cold out. It's just a lot of snow. So we'll be fine.
BALDWIN: Spoken like a true Bostonian, Dana Rosengard. Dana, thank you for calling me at 1:30 in the morning. I appreciate it. Stay safe. Enjoy the snow.
ROSENGARD: You're welcome, dear. You're doing a great job, as always. BALDWIN: Thank you.
Let's go to Ali Velshi now. Ali is out on Cape Cod. He's in the town of Dennis Port.
And how is it looking out there, Ali?
ALI VELSHI, CNN HOST: Yes, it's gusting again. It's not getting worse. I was listening to your explanation with Chad a little while ago that probably the worst, or hopefully the worst, is above us at the moment and that it felt more -- he described it very well, having covered a number of hurricanes.
He described it as seeming like a hurricane, where there's almost still air for a little while, and then there's a big gust and there's a band of wind and then it stops. That's what it feels like.
It doesn't have the regularity that it had earlier. So I hope that's good news.
I will tell you, though, the personality of the storm has changed so much. Now I'm walking in the snow and it's crunchy and it's crisp, which means it's heavy, and it had melted and it's iced over again, and that's terrible for power lines.
Here's that gust again. See, it just keeps coming through. So that's bad for power lines. The power is back on again. It's -- it just keeps going on and going off. And as I said, if this is happening to you in Massachusetts or in New England, it's not because -- well, first of all, if your power is off, you're not listening to me, so it doesn't matter
But if you're getting intermittent power outages and they're coming back again, it's not that somebody is repairing it. It's that the power is trying to find ways of going through, and then it's overloading or another transformer is going out or a line has gone down. If a line goes down, coming to your hours or coming to your local transformer, you're not getting that fixed anytime soon.
So I was very pleased to hear that conversation you had with that woman from the Red Cross. And that is -- that's worth running again just so people know what to do if you haven't lost your power. Because if you're going to and you lose it between now and tomorrow morning, it may be some time before you get back into it.
The gentleman you were just talking to was saying -- I agree with him, it's not all together that cold. And it is if you're standing on a beach in Dennis Port, Cape Cod --
BALDWIN: If you're Ali Velshi, it's cold.
VELSHI: -- but you shouldn't be doing that. I mean, nobody else is doing that.
BALDWIN: I can't imagine why not. VELSHI: But you should be in your house and you should be seeking shelter. So bottom line is, yes, if you're prepared for this, it's just a northeastern winter storm that happens to have more snow and a little more velocity and more wind, but you can -- you can definitely protect yourself against it.
The danger we're going to have is people who lose power who still insist on being outside, who have been driving. We had that one fatality, at least it's been reported in Poughkeepsie, a traffic accident. That's where these things are going to happen.
Remember, even if you decide you want to walk around, downed lines can still be very dangerous and they can still be coming down. The snow is still feeling very heavy. So that's a situation we have in Cape Cod.
I will remind you, 540,000 customers without power in the northeast. That number is now approaching two hours old, maybe 21/2 hours old, which means the number is quite possibly higher. It could be adjusting itself because of places like this. Is Dennis Port considered a place without power because, three times in the last hour, it's been without power?
But three times in the last hour it's been with power. So it's unclear what's going on. But a lot of people without power, 300,000 of that 540,000 right here in Massachusetts. Massachusetts is getting hit very hard by this storm.
BALDWIN: Right. Now a fatal storm, as you point out. A couple people also have been trapped, it sounds like, in some cars on the Long Island Expressway. They're being tended to. It's going to be a long night. And I think really the best picture of this will be once the sun starts to come up, and we'll be able to see a better picture of what these emergency crews have to deal with.
Ali Velshi, my thanks to you.
Chad Myers, you've been watching this whole thing for hours and hours and hours. Are we through the worst of it?
CHAD MYERS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Yes, I believe we are.
MYERS: Now it's still going to pile up. If you have 24 inches of snow on the ground and by tomorrow you wake up and it's 30, I guess it's still bad. You know, I mean, -- the worst is over. We're way now into the fourth quarter. I'm just keep going with this football thing because the Super Bowl just got over.
But look at this now, Hamden, Connecticut,, that's the new winner at 26.0, and Wolcott now at 24.5. I got a couple of Massachusetts numbers, too, West Springfield up to 15; Framingham at 18; Norton at 17, too, and Randolph had 21 inches there.
And it's still snowing and it will be snowing now for the next six hours at 1 to 2 inches per hour. And Boroughville (ph) in Rhode Island, you are now at 21 inches on the ground.
Portland, Connecticut, 81-mile-per-hour gusts in the past half hour. Logan Airport, you had 76. Good numbers there. Man, you know, I mean, I don't remember seeing numbers like that during Sandy in some spots.
It was just -- those are real -- those are hurricane-force wind gusts. There you go, there's the low pressure center. About as close to Ali Velshi, what -- it's right there, about as close to him as you're going to get. That means the pressure is as low, the winds are as big. Finally, by later on, that's 4 o'clock, that's finally moving offshore and moving away.
As it moves away, it will take the snow with it. As it takes the snow with it, all that will be left will be some wind. And by tomorrow afternoon, the wind will probably even be down to about 20 or 30, even on the Cape.
We're winding down now. This was a big one. It's still going to snow. There are still some spots that will at least get 4 to 6 more inches of snow. No question. That wouldn't be New York. New York, another maybe 1 to 2; what you see is what you get if you're in the Poconos.
And then as you slide off to the east, into Maine, into Nova Scotia, into Halifax, into Newfoundland, you will see more as the night goes on because the storm is getting closer to you.
BALDWIN: So far, we have been reporting on this one fatality, Chad, thank you.
And we're now getting some new information. So on the other side of the break, I'm going to tell you what exactly we have learned, how this death happened. New details on that, this fatal storm killing one person in Poughkeepsie, New York. Live pictures from Manhattan, CNN's special coverage of the northeast blizzard is back right after this. Stay with me.
BALDWIN: As promised, we're getting that information here on this one fatality that has now been reported out of Poughkeepsie, New York. Here's what we're hearing. This is from the police department in Poughkeepsie, that there was this 74-year-old man, he was out walking along on the road, and a young woman, age 18, was driving along.
And again, according to police, she lost control of her vehicle because of the snow. She hit this man who was walking. He went to the hospital. And that is where he passed away.
As of now, I should note, the driver was not charged with anything, but the investigation is ongoing, Poughkeepsie, New York.
In Rhode Island, the snow already is more than a foot deep. It will continue falling for several more hours and CNN's Poppy Harlow has been in the heart of it in Providence, which she says is in a virtual lockdown.
POPPY HARLOW, CNNMONEY.COM CORRESPONDENT: There's a restaurant, that tall hotel, can't even see it anymore. That's the change we've had in the last hour. The pellets that Ali and Jason are feeling are coming right at us.
And there goes my hat. I'm sure CNN will give me another one. Guys, it is whiteout conditions here. This is wet snow, because it's 34 degrees and that's the huge problem. That's why you have 87,000 customers in Rhode Island alone without power, because this snow is building up on the power lines. It's bringing them down.
We just talked to the mayor's representative. He told us in Providence alone, they've had 60 calls of downed trees or downed power lines. They have 120 vehicles on the road alone here in Providence. They closed the entire I-95 corridor down about five, six hours ago. They haven't done that since the great blizzard of '78. They made it at 5 o'clock illegal for any cars to be on the road.
And this is why. We're standing in the center of Providence, downtown, complete whiteout. And it's going to be like this at least through 6:00 am.
BALDWIN: Poppy Harlow, thank you. By the way, Poppy will be up at 6:00 in the morning Eastern time to work from Providence. So definitely catch her then.
Meantime, as we're watching and covering this northeast blizzard, we have been getting these pictures from the roads. You know the deal in Massachusetts. According to the governor, Deval Patrick, travel ban, unprecedented travel ban. So after 4 o'clock this afternoon, you had to be off the roads.
If you get caught, you would be paying a hefty fine and possibly jail time. We're going to talk to Julian Cummings, who is giving us these live pictures. Look at the car after car after car, and the snow is really piling up. We'll talk to Julian right after this.
BALDWIN: All right, let's go straight to the streets of Boston here. These are live pictures provided by Julian Cummings, who is on the air with me. At 2 o'clock this afternoon, Julian, and you are still out there, still driving. It looks pretty quiet, which is a good thing.
JULIAN CUMMINGS, CNN PRODUCER: It's definitely quiet. It's a totally different picture than we had -- than from 2:00 pm; the roads are completely full of snow. We're seeing less and less plowed. The shot you're seeing is actually lighter than what I'm seeing driving. We're in a complete white-out. Our camera lens is wide open. All the light is showing you more than I can see right now. That's how bad it is.
BALDWIN: Wow, and remind us, because according to the governor, you shouldn't be out on the roads. But it's media and emergency personnel, they're allowed to be out, correct?
CUMMINGS: Correct. Emergency personnel and special services are allowed. We're not seeing much of anyone right now. All these cars you're seeing here, just filled with snow. Plowed in. They have some serious digging out to do tomorrow. This is one of the only streets in Boston that actually has cars on it.
We saw cars earlier being towed if they were parked illegally. They were out. They did not want cars to be in the way of the plowing.
BALDWIN: I'm so glad you brought that up, because that was my next question. When you look at these cars -- I was talking to the Boston mayor earlier this afternoon.
And you know, Boston is sort of notorious for, you know, during a storm like this, look, they will, and you have seen it, they will tow your car because they want to make sure these streets are cleared so that if and when the emergency, the first responders need to get through, they can.
So you've seen -- you've seen cars being towed, huh?
CUMMINGS: Earlier on in the day, for sure, we saw a lot of cars being towed. I mean, the streets are empty for the most part. If I make a quick turn over to another street, you'll see that it's empty. I mean, there's no other vehicles on any of the streets. And there's less and less people as well.
Earlier, we saw some college kids running around, having a good time in the snow. It's late and it's coming down real hard, and people are definitely in for the night. And Boston has that ghost town sort of eerie feel to it right now.
BALDWIN: Eerie, there it is again. Julian Cummings, driving around a very quiet, oddly quiet Boston at this time of night. Julian, thank you. We'll come back to you.
When we come back, we will take you to Staten island. Keep in mind, so many people here have just been through it, really. It was the end of October, superstorm Sandy slammed into several of the states here who are now grappling with this massive blizzard.
We'll take you to Staten island, see how people there are faring, many of them still without heat, without power, after this.
BALDWIN: Well, you never know who you might run into during a blizzard. We had a couple of unexpected encounters earlier tonight. And they happened when Ashleigh Banfield who was in Greenwich, Connecticut, she was reporting for "AC360." Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ASHLEIGH BANFIELD, CNN HOST: I got to ask you, it's 11 o'clock at night. What are you doing cross-country skiing, M'lin (ph)? M'LIN (PH): I'm a physician who always tells people they ought to be exercising on their way to work, so I skied to my office just now.
BANFIELD: You have got to be kidding!
M'LIN (PH): I kid you not, just up the street.
BANFIELD: You're from Wisconsin, aren't you?
M'LIN (PH): I'm from Wisconsin.
BANFIELD: I can call it. I can call -- well, I don't want to stop you having your fun on your way. That was really lovely to watch. So have a good time. Enjoy yourself and just be careful as you get a little bit later on.
Come and meet little tiny Savannah (ph).
Why are you out walking with your baby?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, Savannah (ph) is about nine and a half months old and she's always looking for adventure, so we figure, why not? This is her first big snowstorm. So we're excited. She loves Nemo.
BANFIELD: And cooped up all day, I'm sure, right?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That's right, exactly.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She actually was at her boyfriend's place --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: -- about 15 minutes ago. He's a couple months younger than she is.
BANFIELD: Hi, Savannah (ph). Can you say hi to Anderson Cooper?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Say hey, Anderson.
BANFIELD: All right. You guys get home. It's starting to really come down. OK. Take care.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BALDWIN: Cross country skiing, a baby in a blizzard. Oh, my, and it's 2:00 in the morning and we're still going strong. We're going to be up for the next three hours with you as we continue to watch here, this now fatal storm here.
A life has been claimed in Poughkeepsie, New York. Also have some new information for you coming up for you at the top of the hour on those folks who have been trapped in their cars on the Long Island Expressway. That is coming up next. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)