(USA TODAY) -- A deadly wave of Arctic cold continued its assault across much of thenation Sunday and threatened to bring havoc to Thanksgiving travelthis week.
The storm, blamed for at least eight deaths as itblasted California and the Southwest with heavy rains, flooding, snowand sleet, was moving into the nation's midsection. Snowfall totals of 1to 4 feet were recorded in the Four Corners area where Colorado, Utah,Arizona and New Mexico share a border.
More than 300 flights werecanceled Sunday at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, representingabout one-third of the scheduled departures, and spokeswoman CynthiaVega said deicing equipment had been prepared as officials planned forthe worst.
The storm collapsed roofs and caused hundreds ofrollover accidents, prompting officials to cancel events and closeroads. One accident injured three members of singer Willie Nelson's bandwhen their bus hit a pillar on Interstate 30 about 75 miles northeastof Dallas.
Flagstaff, Ariz., saw at least 11 inches of snow. MetroPhoenix and other parts of central Arizona got more than two inches ofrain.
The large system is likely to slog through the Southeast,bringing rain and thunderstorms to Georgia and states along the GulfCoast just as Americans are making their final dashes home forThanksgiving. Auto club AAA estimates that 43.4 million Americans willtravel 50 or more miles from home from Wednesday through Dec. 1.
Winterstorm warnings and winter weather advisories remained in effect formuch of New Mexico, Texas and Oklahoma, where "significant" sleet andice accumulations were expected, the National Weather Service said."Ifthe storm hugs the coast and develops to its full potential, it could bea nightmare, not only for travelers in the East, but also throughoutthe nation," said Evan Myers, chief operating officer ofAccuWeather.com.
Bitter cold temperatures and stiff winds ahead ofthe storm dropped wind chills into the teens and lower in much of theNortheast on Sunday. In Boston, the wind chill dipped to 0 degrees.
Thesame storm is set to spread heavy, wind-whipped rain across the Southand Interstate-95 corridor Tuesday through Wednesday, threatening traveldelays along roads and at airports.
Rain will spread across theCarolinas on Tuesday, according to an AccuWeather.com forecast. The rainand low-hanging clouds could delay flights heading to and from NewOrleans, Atlanta, Charlotte and other regional airports.
From lateTuesday through Wednesday, travel delays are expected from Washington,D.C., Philadelphia, New York and Boston. Significant delays appearlikely for flights to and from major airport hubs in the Northeast,according to the weather service, which suggests checking your flightstatus before arriving at the airport.
Snow is projected toblanket the Appalachians, although not the lower coastal areas. "Thepotential exists for a foot of snow to fall from Bradford, Pa., toBurlington, Vt.," said Eric Wanenchak, an AccuWeather meteorologist.
Much of the rest of the country should have clear travel conditions.But because of cold air moving in Tuesday and Wednesday, there could belake-effect snow in the Upper Midwest, with some possibly reachingChicago and causing problems at O'Hare airport Wednesday.
The storm has caused hundreds of rollover accidents in the West, prompting officials to cancel events and close roads.
NewMexico got another blast of snow, sleet and ice after parts of thestate were blanketed in snow and freezing rain blamed for a crash thatkilled a 4-year-old girl. Three storm-related deaths were reported in acrash in the Texas Panhandle involving nearly a dozen vehicles. Theweather front also was blamed for three deaths in California and one inArizona.