WASHINGTON (AP) - Winter kept its icy hold on much of the country Monday, with snow falling and temperatures dropping as schools and offices closed and people from the South and Mid-Atlantic to Northeast reluctantly waited out another storm indoors. Four to 8 inches of snow were forecast from Baltimore to Washington - lower than earlier predictions but enough to cause headaches for the region.
Pennsylvania dodged most of the effects of the snowfall to its south as only a few inches fell - and just a trace or even none in some areas. In New Jersey nearly 6 inches has fallen in some areas, with up to 8 forecast. That could make it the eighth snowiest winter in the last 120 years.
In parts of Delaware 4 to 8 inches are forecast, down from predictions of 10 or more inches. Still, residents said they're sick of the harsh winter.
"We're tired of it. We're sick of it," said Martin Peace, a web developer from the Washington suburb of Arlington, Va. He and his wife were walking on the National Mall with their young daughter Sunday before the frigid weather blew in.
Both bemoaned the number of snowy days this year. "It's been hard with a baby being stuck in the house," said Nicole Peace, who works in human resources. "We don't really get the day off, but then we have to work from home with the baby, which is hard."
Snow covered a thin layer of ice in the nation's capital Monday, driven by a blustery wind that stung the faces of those who ventured outside. Officials still warned people to stay off treacherous, icy roads - a refrain that has become familiar to residents in the Midwest, East and even Deep South this year.
The governors of Virginia and Tennessee each declared a state of emergency as snow and ice threatened to make a mess of roads. Virginia State Police troopers responded to more than 300 traffic crashes across the state between 12:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. Monday, with about half occurring in the Richmond area. In northern Virginia, the Jukebox Diner in Manassas opened up at its regular 6 a.m. time, but not a single customer had come in by 8:15, waitress Irene Auiler said.
"I had to drive in to open, and the worst thing was the windshield keep freezing over," Auiler said. Retired restaurant dishwasher Betty Wolfe, 65, gripped the leash tightly as she walked her dog, Maggie, through ankle-deep snow in downtown Hagerstown, Md. "She loves the snow. She loves to run in it," Wolfe said. Wolfe was dressed for winter but not enjoying the frigid wind. She said she would forgo her daily trek to visit her husband in a nursing home nearly a mile away because she's already fallen twice this winter.
More than 2,600 flights in the United States were canceled as of Monday morning, according to flight tracking site FlightAware.com. The bulk of the problems were at airports in Washington, New York and Philadelphia, but "flight cancellations are stacking up all the way from the DC area on up to New England," said Daniel Baker of FlightAware. In the South, commuters faced icy roads. Near Dallas, traffic on Interstate 45 was at a standstill with vehicles backed up at 15 miles or more.
There were reports of some motorists being stuck since Sunday night. In central Kentucky, vehicles moved slowly and quietly on roads that were mostly snow covered and slushy despite plows going through. The lines separating lanes were mostly invisible under the snow and ice, and at least a few cars had slid off the roadways.
On the Eastern Shore of Virginia, NASA's Wallops Flight Facility closed for the day. The southern parts of the state could see 2 inches to 4 inches of snow, with 8 to 10 inches forecast in in northern Virginia.
Richmond was expected to get as many as 7 inches of snow. Parts of West Virginia could get up to 10 inches of snow. That sent residents on a hunt for food, water and supplies as state offices closed. "I'm sick of the snow," David Mines of Charleston said as he stopped at a convenience store. "I've been in this state for 14 years, and I think this is the worst winter we've had."