Freezing rain and ice coated trees and roads in Vienna, Va., Dec. 9 during a winter storm. (Andrew P. Scott, USA TODAY)
(USA TODAY) -- An unrelenting winter storm continued to spread its misery along much of the East Coast on Monday, providing a wake-up call of freezing rain, fog and mist to commuters and travelers.
Forecast: Tampa Bay Weather Forecast
The gloomy morning came hours after a swath of snow and ice plastered the landscape from Virginia to New England, causing highway pileups Sunday and disrupting commuters Monday morning. The latest snow and ice blast was in the East, but the storm's impact on anguished fliers was being felt across much of the nation.
The National Weather Service said the greatest area of concern was from central Virginia to southeast New York, where some areas were seeing another quarter inch of ice before before temperatures began rising Monday morning.
The respite could be brief: The weather service is forecasting another 3-5 inches of snow for the Washington-Baltimore area on Tuesday, where the weather service has issued a winter storm watch for the morning hours. New York City can expect 1-3 inches.
Federal offices in the Washington, D.C., area delayed opening by two hours Monday due to the weather, and schools across the region were opening late or closed for the day.
Flight delays may linger through much of Monday in the Northeast because of low clouds.The storm canceled more than 3,200 flights Sunday and delayed thousands more, according to estimates from the website Flightaware.com. More than 1,400 of Monday's flights were already canceled, the greatest share from Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, which was still reeling from the effects of the ice storm that brought north Texas to a standstill.
Tampa International Airport tweeted on Monday afternoon that it had experienced 114 flight delays and 12 cancellations.
Tuesday's storm could bring new headaches.
Weather service meteorologist Bruce Sullivan said the new storm will sweep in from the southwest and bring rain to the South and snow from Virginia to southern New England before it fades. The Baltimore-Washington area will get the worst of it, he said.
"And it looks like it will role into the region at a terrible time, morning rush," Sullivan said.
The weekend snow came from an Arctic blast of frigid air that froze highways in the middle of the country over the weekend and knocked power out to thousands of homes. Frigid temperatures remained in place Monday for most of the north-central U.S., with many locations at or near 0 degrees.
Travel problems could linger into Monday afternoon, with freezing rain and icy conditions sticking around as wintry weather stretched from Missouri to Maine.
Forecasts had predicted 1 to 4 inches of snow across the Northeast, but the system dumped 6 to 12 inches in a swath that stretched from northern West Virginia to Philadelphia and east into New Jersey, said Brian Hurley, meteorologist with the weather service's Weather Prediction Center.
"We knew there was going to be some bands of precipitation," Hurley said. "We didn't quite expect it to have the intensity in snowfall that it did."
The auction site eBay warned that severe weather across the country could delay shipments, especially in Arkansas, Mississippi, Tennessee, Ohio and Texas. The site urged customers to be patient with shippers. The lousy weather is something for which the major retailers and shippers do their best to accommodate, but they can only do so much.
"Sure, it drives them crazy," said Dick Seesel, owner of Retailing in Focus, a retail consulting firm. "But you're talking about companies that today operate coast-to-coast." Macy's, for example, which is now a national instead of regional retailer, he said, is much less vulnerable to bad weather in one part of the country when it has operations nationwide.
Heavy snow in the Philadelphia area Sunday led to a number of accidents, including a fatal crash on the Pennsylvania Turnpike that spawned fender-benders involving 50 cars, stranding some motorists for up to seven hours.
But the nasty weather wasn't limited to the East Coast. Nebraska and Iowa saw snow; multiple weather-related crashes were reported in Wisconsin, including two that were fatal; and thousands of customers lost power in Mississippi because of sleet and freezing rain.
A snowstorm that hit along the Utah-Arizona border left hundreds of travelers stranded on Interstate 15 overnight into Sunday.
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