Accessibility links

Breaking News

Major Snowstorm Hits Washington and Nearby States

<object classid="clsid:d27cdb6e-ae6d-11cf-96b8-444553540000" codebase=",0,0,0" width="480" height="474" id="kickWidget_45137_328100" > <embed src="" name="kickWidget_45137_328100" width="480" height="474" pluginspage="" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" wmode="transparent" allowScriptAccess="always" allowFullScreen="true" FlashVars="affiliateSiteId=45137&amp;widgetId=328100&amp;width=480&amp;height=474&amp;revision=54"></embed></object>

A major winter storm has paralyzed Washington D.C. and dumped record-setting amounts of snow in states surrounding the U.S. capital.

The heavy snow was accompanied by powerful winds producing blizzard conditions that left hundreds of thousands of homes without electricity.

Airports were closed and rail service disrupted. The heavy snow brought down the roof on a hanger at (Dulles) the international airport outside Washington.

States of emergency have been declared from the states of Virginia to New Jersey. Officials were urging people to stay off the roads.

The storm, which lasted for more than 24 hours from Friday into Saturday, is being followed by unseasonably cold temperatures, complicating clean-up efforts.

U.S. President Barack Obama dubbed the blizzard "Snowmageddon." His motorcade was involved in a minor accident as it left the White House grounds on Saturday.

This the second major snow storm to hit the Middle Atlantic region of the United States in less than two months.

Severe weather has also occurred in California where torrential rains touched off mudslides. Dozens of homes in the Los Angeles area were damaged and cars were swept away by a wall of mud and rock.

The area affected had been made vulnerable by last summer's wildfires.

Some information for this report provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.