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Historic Blizzard Slams Northeast

Aired January 26, 2015 - 21:00   ET


ANDERSON COOPER, AC360 HOST: Hey good evening, thanks for joining. It's 9:00 p.m. here in New York City, in the East Coast which is right now, starting to experience the worst of a winter storm that could be one for the record books. It is getting very windy up here. We're overlooking Columbus Circle, from the Time Warner Center.

The snow picking up just in the last several minutes, we're expecting several inches of snow an hour until late tomorrow, possibly. Wind approaching hurricane force, serious flooding possible as well. A travel ban taking effect right now as we speak in Connecticut,. People have been told to stay off the roads, so that emergency vehicles can get through.

In a little less than two hours, the city of New York, well for all intends and purposes, is shutting down at 11:00 p.m. tonight. All non-emergency vehicles are supposed to be off the street. You'll get $300 fine if you're not.

Local bus and commuter, rail traffic stops. Bridges and tunnels closed. And the subways, the city's lifeline will stop running. We have correspondents all across the northeast. We're going to be checking in with all of them throughout the coming hours. But first I want to bring in our Chad Myers, he's monitoring this massive storm with me right here.

Take us to the timeline what to expect overnight in to tomorrow.

CHAD MYERS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: You know, I think by 10:00 we're not going to see 5th Avenue. Those buildings over there will disappear. They will all be gone in this snow. For a while today, we have visibility down to about 100 feet, it was really coming down.

Now, we're just losing Central Park, north up there because the snow is starting, but it's just getting from about Central Long Island, now back toward here, back toward Manhattan, the wind is blowing that snow harder and harder. And then by 10:00, 11:00 tonight, we start to see it pick up to almost its max intensity for Montauk. Now, that's a few hours east of here.

COOPER: All right, Montauk is the far east end of Long Island.

MYERS: Correct. And this is going to spin up and it's going to continue to get stronger, the water, all the warm in Gulf of Mexico and in the Atlantic, relative to this cold air up here is 47 degrees. Think about a hurricane that gets to the 85 degree water, what happens? The hurricane gets bigger. So this very cold storm is now over very warm water, 47 relative.

It's warmer than (inaudible) and you get like a thick snow from (inaudible). And so this is the late effect, we're starting to get, it's called the bombogenesis, we start the bomb storm out, the pressure gets much lower, the winds pick up and the snow comes down, it rates to two to four inches per hour.

COOPER: In some areas, possibly as high as hurricane force winds, hurricane force wind is what? 75 miles an hour?

MYERS: Probably hurricane force gust.


MYERS: So 75 miles per hour.

COOPER: So not sustaining wind, we're talking about the gust.

MYERS: Not sustain. No, sustain is only 50. But along the coast where the water is flat, there's no friction. And that's where the waves and winds will be the strongest. Right along any coast to section, again, Montauk or back towards (inaudible) or anywhere who are up into Maine, that's where the strongest. I think that's where we're going to see that 75 mile per hour, probably (inaudible).

COOPER: And even going into tomorrow, in terms of people trying to plan whether they go to work. I mean travels going to be incredibly difficult, real trouble shutdown...

MYERS: Sure.

COOPER: ... quite lot of offices is shutdown as well. This thing is going to last, well until tomorrow.

MYER: You know, it's cold out here, it truly is. Its 20, 24 degrees. Right, and the wind chill is probably somewhere around 10. Later tonight the wind chill as the wind picks up, it's going to get probably 10 below. I couldn't feel my toes about 10 minutes ago, I went inside to warm a little bit. You know, take care of the pets out there too, because they can't go inside and go get hand warmers, they need your help, they need your help at home to stay safe, stay warm and to stay alive tonight.

It's going to be deadly for not only people but for pets as well.

COOPER: And we don't -- in terms of when this is over, when the worst is done, we're not even sure the timeline on this.

MYERS: It doesn't stop here for 24 hours. And if we get a half inch of snow per hour, that's an additional foot. If we get an inch of snow per hour, which is likely, that's 24 additional inches, we already have about five on the ground. All of a sudden you're back into where that weather service says 24 to 30 inches to come.

COOPER: All right, there's a lot to cover in this hour. Coming back to you throughout, the next hour. Let's go to Ana Cabrera on far eastern tip of New York's Long Island, which we were just talking about, to see some of the worst of it firs. Ana.

ANA CABRERA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hey Anderson, this is by many accounts the end of Long Island, here in on Montauk. And it's the end of the day as people are just boarding up their houses, hankering down, preparing for the worst tonight, expecting 11 to 18 inches of snow in the over night hours on top of the few inches that have already fallen, and then another seven to 11 inches tomorrow. So we're going to see two to three feet of snow, is what's anticipated for this area. And you can see the snow is swirling, it's picking up here and the winds are really picking up as well at times.

It's hard to stay standing as those big gusts continue to blow us out here. We could see wind gust up to 70 miles per hour, it's what we're expecting in the overnight hours. And then you'll also have the storm surge to worry about in this (inaudible) island community, where they're anticipating two to four feet above the normal tide.

And here we're seeing folks on snow mobiles. Also out and about here this evening, not many cars out, but now people are finding ways to get around creatively and still trying to stay safe on the roads. But you can see folks like this are certainly prepared.

Excuse me gentlemen, we're live on CNN right now. Why be out in this condition?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Because it's really nice and snow is here, it's not scary.

CABRERA: Are you making any preparations for the incoming storm?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, we're enjoying the (inaudible).

CABRERA: It's a little windy.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, it's beautiful out here.

CABRERA: Well be safe. Thank you for taking a moment. Do be safe this evening. So again, just a few people out here, Anderson. We talked to some other residents earlier who say, that they've really stocked up on supplies, on gas for their generators and are going to hope for the best.

Power has been, by the way, improved since super storm Sandy were told. They had the major power outages for weeks during super storm Sandy here on Long Island. And since then the power company had may extra efforts in improvement in the infrastructure. And so there's a lot of people hoping that that does the trick for this storm as it passes through, Anderson.

COOPER: And I think (inaudible), he got some questions as well.

MYERS: Yeah, Ana talk about those improvements, are you talking about burying the power lines or shoring up the existing power lines? Because from what I remember of Montauk, and it's been long, long time ago, there's a lot of trees out there and those tree limbs could bring down power lines and they're still above ground. Kind of give us the lay of the land there.

CABRERA: Well that is the big concern here and we heard that from Governor Andrea Cuomo earlier. He discussed that there is still a lot of the power lines and the infrastructure supporting the power grid here, that is still above ground. And so while they've made improvements, they haven't been perfect. And he specifically did mention the many trees and the tree limbs that could come crushing down in the over night hours with those wind gust up to 70 miles per hour in top of the heavy snow.

And so, there's still a great hope that those improvements that have been made, well we haven't been as specific as we would like but there -- has been definitely an effort put in, in place. I'm talking to residents out here, they're feeling more confident than ever that they will be able to kind of ride out the storm, so to speak.

COOPER: Yeah, the LILCO, which is the power company out there on that Eastern Long Island, they came under a lot of criticism from residents in a wake of Sandy, just for the way that they dealt with it in long time it took to bring back power through a lot of areas. Ana, we're going to continue checking with you.

The New Jersey shore, of course, we all remember, took a pounding from hurricane Sandy, it started taking one now. Brian Todd is there for us.

The wind seems to be a real problem where you are, right Brian?

BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It is Anderson, it's a huge problem now. And I can tell you that since the last time we spoke to you about 30 minutes or so ago, it has gotten considerably worst here along New Jersey shore in Asbury Park.

Look at the way the wind is whipping all around the board walk, it is really getting stronger now, it is very difficult to stand out here and walk, to maneuver a car, anything like this. The wind picking up along with the tide, you can't see the ocean quite as well as you could a little while ago, but the tide is coming in. In a little bit more than three hours from now, it's going to be high tide and that's considered, you know, a real danger for some coastal flooding here.

There is no travel ban being instituted here in New Jersey, but as you can see, just in the way, I'm trying to get around in the board walk around here. It is very difficult to move around there, telling people that while there's no travel ban, you really should not risk going out on the roads. And they're saying, "You've got to get your vehicle out of the main road ways." If you think you are going to get stuck because everything will be towed if it is left there in place.

I think I heard you mentioned a little while, Anderson, the roads and bridges or the tunnels and bridges rather from New Jersey here to New York are going to be closed in a couple of hours. We got work on that as well, from New Jersey state police. But check this out. I mean now, in addition to the wind, which is getting more of the snow, the volume is getting worst. You can see it behind me, you can see it all around me. It is really

picking up the snow and the wind together. Earlier the wind was bad, the snow wasn't quite so bad, but now it is getting very bad on both counts along with the tide coming tide. They expect may be one to two inches per hour starting right about now, Anderson, until about noon tomorrow.

MYERS: Brian, hey it's Chad, it looks like you're on another planet. It looks like you're in a wind tunnel of some sort, and we know that millions and millions of dollars were spent on restoring that beach. Is that beach just going away?

TODD: Well, you know, Chad, I'm not sure of the beach is, you know, I can't see the beach too well, I can walk over here now and take a look at it and see what I can see but I can tell you that, we talked about the white out conditions, we are really starting to see at the beginning of the white out conditions because my visibility now is getting much, much worst.

I don't think the beach is eroding at the moment, I can't -- from what I can see, it's not. But again, we've got several more hours of this kind of condition here along the New Jersey shore, so, you could see some erosion. And as we talked about, this area was just slumped by super storm Sandy a couple of years ago. Some of it hasn't recovered yet and now they got this to deal with.

It is getting much, much worst, where I'm standing right now guys.

COOPER: And Brian, I mean, it looks like you're getting whipped around from all directions, that wind is just kind of swirl and bring it up a lot of snow, it just keeps changing and moving around.

TODD: It really is Anderson, you're getting it from the northeast, kind of coming down hitting me square on the face. But if I turn this way, I can still, you know, I can get some of the back swirl kind of coming at from the south. And we know the system is kind of moving this way.

With also a little bit of deceiving here, it doesn't look like it's accumulating on the board walk, it's not, simply because the wind is just (inaudible) right now. But just the block or so, inland, it is really starting to accumulate on the roads, and this is where it's getting dangerous. Because, again, we talked white out conditions.

The state police told me a short time ago, that's what they really worried about. They can't get around so well in these conditions and they're telling motorists if we can't get around and get to you, you're going to be in a bad way if you (inaudible) out in this stuff.

COOPER: Brian, are you seeing -- I mean, are you seeing people still out? I know when we talked at the beginning of the last hour, there was somebody out walking their dogs, are the streets pretty empty right now?

TODD: Right, they are empty now, because really in the last half hour or so, Anderson, it has got significantly worst. It is very difficult to be out and moving around. We did see -- excuse me, a father and a son come out and takes a picture about half an hour ago, but nobody is out right now.

COOPER: All right Brian, we're going to continue to check in with you, try to get -- stay warm for a little bit. It's amazing to see him out there there.

MYERS: It was mesmerizing. I watch that. We have a five inch monitor. If you're watching in a 65 inches plasma at home, I can't even imagine what they looks like.

COOPER: Well let's hope people are staying at home to watch him on T.V.

MYERS: I hope so.

COOPER: (inaudible) going outside, and no reason to be out here. As pretty as it is, and again New York, there's still -- you're seeing handfuls of people here and there, kind of walking around, but early these road is now significantly reduced in traffic. I mean you can only see about three or four vehicles right here in Columbus circle, which is very rare for this time.

MYERS: All the cellphones are going off. Everybody's cellphone is going off with the warning, you must have your car and stop driving by 11:00. It's all of those alert are going off. I'm just inside for a few minutes and I can hear all the cellphones.

COOPER: Wow, interesting. And as always, make sure you set your DVR. You can watch 360 whenever you want. We have a lot of coverage -- storm coverage all throughout this hour. Coming up next, we'll take you to Connecticut, all private vehicles are supposedly off the roads statewide right now.

Also, I'll take you to Boston with the roads closed for cars and trucks, at midnight. We'll be right back.


COOPER: It is 27 degrees here in New York. The wind is starting to pick up here in Columbus Circle. Condition's getting worse and worse across the areas, especially out in Long Island. Correction, I think that's the power company goes LILCO. LILCO was back when I was a kid in Long Island, then it was LIPA during Sandy, which came under a lot of criticisms, it's now PSEG.

Also I got to say, we've been getting out a tweets, a one person, particular Kathleen Fox (ph), said, she doesn't believe that I cleaned up outside my house. I live in a little firehouse in downtown New York and everybody in New Yorker is responsible for the sidewalk in front of their house, so I shovel my house, you got to do it like three or four times.

MYERS: You did.

COOPER: Because as you said, the snow just keeps coming back. You also got to spread out a lot of salt.

MYERS: And I was watching down here, although there must of 15 people tying to clear it down here and I'm telling you, in five minutes, what was just plowed was completely covered again, you know, half inch of snow.

COOPER: You also got to keep putting the salt down and a couple of hours later, keep doing it again. But everybody in New Yorker is responsible legally for the sidewalk, in front of their house. So I don't who else they would think does it.

MYERS: I'm glad you did it. You should be socially responsible.

COOPER: I am, I'm a good citizen. Let's checking with Ana Cabrera, she's in Montauk, Ana how is it?

CABRERA: Hey Anderson, you talked about shoveling and I'm on a sidewalk that's in much need of shovel, if you have on hand. You can see that this is one of the (inaudible) where there was wind gust just seem to come out of nowhere, like we're experiencing right now. And we're already seen some significant drifting of snow including where we standing. It is almost a foot deep with just the snow drift, right here where we are standing.

And we're, again, anticipating the worst of it yet to come with two to three more feet of snow on top of what is already fallen, adding in those really gusty wind up to 70 miles per hour is so what the forecast are saying. We could see in the next few hours, as the storm system continues to really dub here, particularly as we are kind of in the heart of the where the storm is suppose to pass.

We're just 20 miles really from the coast of Connecticut, just to give you some perspective of where Montauk is on that tip of Long Island. And we're still seeing the very barren roads out here as these winds really just whip across the road, it gives you a sense of what could be whether the blizzard conditions that we're expecting pick up here a little bit later. And so for that reason, we know that Long Island will go in to a travel ban, effect starting at 11:00 tonight. And so everybody is asked to stay indoors, stay at home and get ready for what could come.

And the folks here are all hoping that it's a 24 hours thing and it's beyond and we're able to kind of pick up and continue on. But that, of course, is not what is to be expected.

It could be days, even -- well it could be end of the week until this place is back to normal, Anderson.

MYERS: Hey Ana, it is Chad. If that wind picks up to 60 miles per hour, your windshield is going to get really, really cold. Try of protect yourself from that, the camera man too.

We talked about the pets taking them inside, giving them some shelter, making sure they have water, some place away from the wind because that wind chill affects not only people but it affects the pets as well, Anderson. COOPER: Ana thank you very much for that. We'll check...

CABRERA: Right, we know that...

COOPER: Go ahead Ana.

CABRERA: I was going to say, we know right now wind gust are already the wind chill affect is in the single digits out here. So you're right, when the wind comes you definitely feel a huge different in change in temperature.

COOPER: Yeah, and it is definitely (inaudible) colder here and we're certainly feel more wind though, we didn't pick it up just...

MYERS: Well congratulations, you've been outside for a while. He walks at here at 8:00, so just not bad. I said, I've been staying out here since....


MYERS: ... 9:00 this morning, it is cold.

COOPER: The longer you are at here it starts to take effect.

MYERS: Yeah.

COOPER: Let's go to Boston. Brooke Baldwin is standing by. Brooke, we talked to the Mayor a short time ago. It sounds like they have things -- they are prepared for this. They've got a lot of equipment out there. How are things right now?

BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, I heard interview with Mayor Martin Walsh with you, Anderson, out of Boston and I thought he's point was so great about, just making sure you check on your neighbors, right?

Walk with me a little bit and you can see, one -- the biggest difference in talking to you now from the last hour is definitely fewer cars on the road. You can see somebody is plowing this park area where we are and we have seen a couple of plows, definitely a couple of salt trucks already, rolling down on this mean (inaudible) here in the Boston Harbor area.

And we have -- tilt down just a little bit. Just to give you an example, so this is the sidewalk here in this park and this is sort of what the streets are starting to look like here in Boston. We're watching and waiting to see exactly how much snow accumulates here in the city of Boston. I think what we've been seeing tonight in New York, New Jersey, it's really about the (inaudible), in just about and Chad can -- he can tell you exactly when about an hour, maybe an hour and a half from now.

Just walking back over here, we have seen a couple of people with dogs, hanging out. Listen, I've said this before, this is a hardy group of people in Boston. They know how to deal with snow. I think the Mayor really has underlined the issue of towing, because as of 6:00 tonight, if you had your car parks on a main street in Boston, you had to move it. They're offering discounts on parking lot because they have to be able to plow the roads.

A huge concern here which is the concern really up and down New England is power outrages. I was listening earlier and there were a potentially anticipating hundreds of thousands of power outages. But just talking to people, they say, you know, if they live through that 78 blizzard, they just know what it will never be knock on wood, at all as bad, because we've really had the hands up.

And if you're a Patriots fan, the big concern today here in Boston was, will the Pats get out of Logan Airport before this happens. And to the Pat fans who are watching, indeed, they have -- they should now be Sunny Phoenix Arizona. But we'll ride this out tonight and see. Again, like I said, it think it's about an hour, it's definitely coming down but it should really intensify maybe by 10:00 tonight and we'll be here in the middle of it, Anderson.

MYERS: Yeah. Hey Brooke, it's Chad. It's going to go all night. I mean we're not...

BALDWIN: Exactly.

MYERS: ... going to see a peak at 10:00. You're going to see a peak at 10:00 and it's going to go up at 11:00, it's going to go up at 12:00, going to keep going up at 3:00, going to keep going up at 6:00. This isn't going taper off for you until noon tomorrow.

So you need to really...

BALDWIN: When I hear that...

MYER: Yeah, this is a (inaudible).

BALDWIN: Just (inaudible). Right -- No, absolutely, I think that's what I meant by just back when we really start to see the...

MYER: Yeah.

BALDWIN: ... beginning of the snow (inaudible) us, right?

MYERS: Yeah.

COOPER: Start (inaudible) there Brooke, but you got a long night ahead of you. We're going to get to...

BALDWIN: It's what it sounds like.

COOPER: Yeah, we're going to get to Connecticut next, where travel ban has just gone into effect. We're going to take a short break. I'll be right back.


COOPER: And welcome back. We are live in New York City. Twenty- seven degrees dropping here on Columbus Circle, it is coming up on 9:30 until the snow will soon be so bad here. We will not be able to see the sign behind us from where we're at. There on the other side of the screen. It's already bad out on Long Island. And a travel ban is now in effect in Connecticut. Randi Kaye is in New London. She joins us from there.

Randi, are people still outside at all? Are people have ban -- the traffic band at this point?

RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Anderson, we have seen some people outside. There's a car just going by there behind me, so we aren't seeing that many people. We're seeing more plow trucks and some fire trucks and things like that. A lot of plow trucks which I'm happy to report, this is a very busy areas. So they are taking care of the street. They call them priority streets, so they're making sure that they are clear.

But it's definitely coming down. I have checked with our weather folks, Anderson, and the wind is certainly picking up. It's gusting through about 29 miles an hour right now. That's going to be going on.

We're getting some wide out conditions beginning here. I'm also experiencing those and being told that officially by our weather folks. And the snow is coming down now about one to two inches per hour.

And it is sort of a light snow. I mean, it is -- it's sort of heavy as it comes down but it's now, you know, it's not pack to sort of, you know, lighter like this. So that's what you're seeing on the ground. But don't let that fool you because it is eventually going again heavy and it can cause some problems with this power lines that are above ground.

They're expecting 120,000 people to loss power here in the State of Connecticut. And that's a real problem for folks who couldn't get a generator. We talked with these folks who live crossed the street here and they have two little kids. They went right after the storm was announced, Anderson.

They couldn't get a generator. They're already sold out. They couldn't get milk. They couldn't get water. They couldn't get salt to put on their drive way. So there's a real problem here.

Luckily, this guy told us that his dad leaves just a couple of houses down, so they know that if they do loss power, they can get over there and hopefully get some warmth in that generator but they have whole bunch of candles going and their heat kicking right now.

He also told us very interesting. There is park here. They've actually -- they have cut some of the trees here because they want to make sure that the trees -- if the snow gets too heavy that the branches don't fall on the power line. So they were taking precautions. But again, there are still some folks out wanting to see what's going on, curious and still driving around this area, Anderson.

COOPER: All right. Randi, I try to get warm while I'm checking with you throughout the hour.

Joining is now on the phone is Pedro Segarra, the Mayor of Hartford, Connecticut. Mr. Mayor, thank you very much for being with us.

How well-prepared are you in Hartford for what you're seeing out there?

MAYOR PEDRO SEGARRA, HARTFORD, CONNECTICUT: Well, we're more prepared than ever. We've learned from the previous storms. And we know that getting the word out early on and coordinating our resources early in the processes is very important.

We issued a snow ban at 3:00 this afternoon. And people generally have been abiding it. I just get a report on the -- I got a report on the number of cars towed so far, it's only about 120 cars. That's a significant reduce from previous storms. So people are abiding by the parking ban.

That is important. We are the financial and in insurance center of the region. We're also the medical hub. All of the major restaurants are -- hospitals are in Hartford. So it's very important for us to provide a clear access because we service a broader region.

So, the routes, the major routes going in to the hospitals, those get priorities. And I hear that there's -- they're absolutely clear in terms of (inaudible) the storm intensifies. It's just a matter of making sure that we keep the pressure and keep on removing the snow.

And, you know, in the past sometimes we've had up to four inches falling and when we get (inaudible) conditions, it's very difficult to consider the snow removal operations. We're hoping that that's not the case and we're hoping to aggressively pursue the clearing of the roads.

COOPER: And people are suppose to be off the roads right now, how long does that stay in effect for? When is that ban lifted?

SEGARRA: Well the Governor had issued a driving ban on state roads. There is light traffic right now in the street. It's very light. In the highway, it's almost completely gone. There's (inaudible) vehicles.

I've been driving around the city just making sure that I keep my eye into different areas of the city, making sure that the things are running smoothly. But the highway system pretty much, there's absolutely no traffic and very, very light traffic in the city. And we hope that that's (inaudible).

We've been encouraging a resident to take advantage to just stay at home, not be out on the road. They've been going a pretty good job in terms of keeping the cars. I'm very proud of the committee and I just -- we'll continue to have them do that until the snow finishes and we're able to clear all the roads. It will make a lot easier for us like that.

You know, again, we're just keeping our fingers cross that we don't get anything up to 30 inches. And anytime that we can encourage (inaudible) the predictions can come down but, that's great news for us.

COOPER: And I know that obviously the governors of the state preparing for 120,000 people to loss power. Have you had any power outages so far?

SEGARRA: No. And our experiences then with the power outages, it tends to be concentrated along the coastline.

The last major storm that we had basically in Hartford, we had a lot less outages. Most of our infrastructure for power distribution is underground. But we do still have (inaudible) of number of lines in the neighborhood.

Last time though we were very quick to (inaudible) break from being with 50 percent without power, so, just 10 percent with our power. And we were able to recuperate very quickly. That was in the case in the in the suburbs (inaudible) cost of committee is because -- of course the infrastructure that needed to be repaired was a lot more expensive.

So we're keeping our finger crossed. Of course, there's high wind advisories but we're keeping our finger crossed and just making sure that we prepare. We have more representatives on the light company that are at our emergency operation center. And the point is that is to make sure that our DPWH can assist in clearing trees but they're not allowed to touch power lines. That's up to CLNP (ph) and we (inaudible) coordinate that with them and we hope to be a successful as we did in the past...

COOPER: Right.

SEGARRA: ... in terms of restoring power.

COOPER: Mr. Mayor, I know you get a lot to do. I appreciate your talking to us and we wish you the best tonight ...

SEGARRA: My pleasure.

COOPER: ... and to everybody in the city as well.

We're going to check back in with our Brian Todd who's really in the teeth of the storm right now in the New Jersey's shore. We'll also go back to Long Island and a quick update on travel around the area.

When our storm coverage continues throughout the hour and throughout the night. We'll be right back.


COOPER: Hey and welcome back here. You're looking at a live picture from a roof cam at the top of Time Warner Center here in Columbus Circle across the park.

And Chad, you know, you and I were talking at around 8:00 tonight. We'd looked across the park. You could still see 5th Avenue which is about four or five blocks away.

MYERS: Yeah.

COOPER: There were still no visibility to see it. You look out there now. You can barely make out the outline of it.

MYERS: Right. And our visibility is down to about four miles, which translates to about a half inch per hour.

When we can't see 5th Avenue, that would be about three quarters of an inch per hour. And when we can't see the buildings right there, you're talking about one to two inches per hour.

The important note here and people are going, "Is this is really going to happen?" Because it doesn't look like a lot. And it's just snowing. It's (inaudible). But the storm is only been over the Gulf Stream now for about seven hours.

Thirty hours from now, it finally gets pass (inaudible). And that warm water that is the Gulf Stream, that's the Atlantic Ocean, is the fuel to this storm's fire. So it's still going to build for almost another full day. We finally find the passes and head towards(inaudible). So there's a lot more to go.

COOPER: Noon tomorrow, we're still going to be seeing very difficult dangerous conditions.

MYERS: Yeah. The winds are still beginning stronger. The snow eventually for New York is going to stop and it will in Connecticut, Vermont, New Hampshire and Boston and, you know, all of Massachusetts.

It depends on how long it snows here. If we get 20 more hours of snow, we're going to get 20 more inches on top of what we are now.

COOPER: Let's check with our Brian Todd now, he's at Asbury Park on the Boardwalk. Last time, we were checking in on him and the wind is just swirling all around him.

Brian, explain where you are and what you're seeing.

TODD: Anderson, we're on the Boardwalk in Asbury Park, New Jersey. And the wind is still swirling. It's getting worst.

I think it's just gotten worst and worst every hour since we've been out here. It is knocking some of the snow drift off the Boardwalk but don't let that deceive you.

I just spoke with an Asbury Park police officer who said, just a block or two inland that the side roads are really horrible. He says, they don't think they can get snow plows out until maybe 4:00 in the morning. If that bad, and it's going to worst in the overnight hours.

You can see the drift out here. The wind is very, very strong. We're told that it is in about maybe 36 miles an hour where we are, I can tell you it feel a lot stronger because the snow is hitting us from different directions. It hits you like needles on your face, constantly, when you're out here. The tide is coming in. In a couple of hours, it's going to be high tide. That's creating more of a concern here because of potential flooding.

We also just got told by this officer that in a couple of hours -- less than a couple of hours at 11:00 p.m., a travel ban will be in place for this area of New Jersey. So, they're just telling everyone, right now, you cannot come out here.

This is the problem. The wind is so strong right now. It's just destroying visibility. It's hard for me to see out here just a couple of feet from me, because it's hitting me. I can see a little bit better because the wind is blowing that way. And when I look to that direction, the visibility is a little bit better. But when you're driving around, you can't take those chances and you cannot, under any circumstances we're told, leave your vehicle anywhere on any of these roads.

They will get rid of it. They will tow it. And, you know, it will just create more of the cascading effect for the snow plows, the spreaders. It will hinder them from doing their jobs.

So they're really warning people. This is the dangerous period between now and between maybe 10 a.m. at noon tomorrow, Anderson.

COOPER: You know, Brian, Chad was talking earlier about the storm that hit Atlanta last year, a lot of people are trapped on the highways, the lack of preparation for it. It seems like a lot of lessons have been learned, not only from that but also from Sandy. It seems like certainly in Asbury there's been a lot more preparation, at least today.

TODD: There has been preparation today, Anderson. But as you guys have bee discussing, the real awareness of this storm didn't start to creep in until yesterday even nationwide.

They knew a storm was coming. They didn't know it was going to be bad until really last night and this morning. But the people here having been to Super storm Sandy a couple of years ago, they know that, you know, they now know what the power of nature can do when these storms hit this coastal areas with such force.

And this one right now is hitting with considerable force. It's really hard to be out here.

COOPER: Yeah. Well, Brian, go inside, get warm, I appreciate you've been out there for us. Late words tonight from Amtrak, regional and (inaudible) trains between New York and Boston cancel tomorrow. As for air travel, this was certainly not a normal day, tomorrow will not be either.

I'll check back in with Rene Marsh at LaGuardia Airport.

Are all flights canceled all -- are they're canceled all tomorrow as well?

RENE MARSH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, yes Anderson. Out of LaGuardia, they are canceled. You will not see any activity. You talk about abnormal, this is abnormal. This is one of the countries busiest airports. And look, I mean, we're the only ones in here. You look at the machines, no one there. You look at the ticket counters, empty.

This is the scene and a lot of the country's busiest airports because the problem is thousands and thousands of flights have been canceled. This scenario will replay again tomorrow. Already more than 4,000 flights has been canceled.

So if you're trying to fly, you're really out of options, I should tell you tomorrow. And for Wednesday they're already starting with cancellations as well.

As much as -- this is a headache, Anderson, for people who want to get to their destination and cannot, it actually in the long run will help these airlines ramp up operations faster once this storm passes through, because what the airlines don't want is for the plane to be stock in all of the snow that I see out the window here at LaGuardia.

So as much as this is tougher for travelers, the airline say they're doing this pre-cancellations. So when the storm passes, you can get to your destination a lot faster.

COOPER: And obviously Rene, this has cascading effects at airports around the country. I mean, people in the West Coast trying to get to the Northeast or even get anywhere else, it's going to missed up travel all across the country.

MARSH: Absolutely, not only across the country. This also stretches internationally, because when you start having problems with operations as an airport like Newark International Airport, even here at LaGuardia there are so many international flights that go in and out of these major hubs. When major airlines like United State they're suspending operations, you're going to have that ripple effects.

So not only domestic travelers going to suffer, also those international travelers as well, Anderson.

COOPER: Yeah. Rene, I appreciate that.

When you took on the word that they're seeing in New Jersey, we'll they're putting travel ban into effect at 11:00.

We'll go next to Rhode Island. We'll be right back.


COOPER: Hey, welcome back to our continuing coverage of the storm. We've just got some breaking news, New Jersey has announcing statewide travel ban for all non-emergency vehicles. That goes into effect at 11:00 tonight, at least until day break. That's what they're saying at this point. At least until day break. That may change throughout the evening.

And again, I'm trying to give you a sense of the conditions that we're starting to see when we were first on the air in 8:00. That's a view across New York Central Park which is about -- let's say five or six blocks. You could easily see what the sky running along 5th Avenue. It's becoming harder and harder to see.

And as Chad Myers is pointing out, throughout the course tonight, that visibility is going to be drastically reduced.

I want to check in with George Howell who is in Providence, Rhode Island. George, are the conditions there are getting worse now in the last hour or so?

GEORGE HOWELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, absolutely. Hard to even look at the camera because the winds are picking up and you feel that snow, you know, kind of hitting you in the face.

And take a look, we're in the middle of the street here in Providence, Rhode Island. And no one is out here. And that's because people are doing what the official said, you know, to stay off of streets at midnight. It is a curfew in effect of travel ban, so people can't be on the streets as of many states out here.

Jordan (ph), can we turn over there just so you can show what it looks like under the light with the snow bowling through. The winds have picked up a bit. Keep in mind, Anderson, it's a lot tougher on the coastline. They're expecting winds anywhere from 60 to 70 miles per hour.

Right now, what we're seeing here in the center of Providence, not too bad but we are expecting it to get worse hour by hour.

COOPER: All right, George thanks very much. You can you actually hear kind of a large rumbling. It's actually the sound of sanitation vehicles out on the streets in the New York. You can see sort of conveyors of sanitation vehicles there. That's the shot right there.

They're usually -- obviously, used to picked up garbage but they've got snowplows attached to them, salt spreaders as well. And that's one way that this city is able to get so many -- so much coverage of all of the borough by using the sanitation vehicles, in order -- you've been seeing four or five at a time, kind of moving in a conveyor.

Right now, they're moving around Columbus Circle and then it looks like they're may be heading up the Westside of New York. I want to check back here with Ana Cabrera. She is all the way out on the Eastern end Long Island out in Montauk.

Ana, it is -- it's getting bad out there.

CABRERA: It's getting blustery to say the least. In fact, you can see that snow just hit me on the face, right in the eyeball. It does not feel good. You can see it really whipping across the roads and when you point up to the light, that's where you're really see how hard that snow is falling and the wind really blowing it sideways out here. So we've been discussing all evening. We're expecting some of the strongest wind gust to hit this peak, this point of Long Island here on Montauk. The end of Long Island, that very eastern tip, not far from the coast of Connecticut, in fact. And I just got an update on what we're expecting, also from what could be some significant coastal flooding and the storm surge that's anticipated as well, as the hours go on.

In fact, we might see now some 10 to 15 foot waves crashing upon the shore at the time while we're seeing two to four foot above normal levels of tide, which can cause some serious beach erosion. That's one of the big concerns of residents in this community but the roads also another huge concern, very traitorous at this hour, getting ices here, getting deeper, snow drift starting to pipe up on the sides of roads and of course that's the big concern for this community that is it is somewhat rural, it is somewhat removed a couple of hours outside of New York City and will there be enough support out here for the folks, should the worst of the storm really dig in as the night goes on.

We have seen a number of plows come up and down this road. So they're trying to get a jumpstart on it but pretty tough when you got the wind continuing to blow snow back over the roadway, Anderson.

COOPER: Yeah, it's going to be long night for a lot of workers all across Long Island, across New York and this entire eastern seaboard, northeastern seaboard.

Ana Cabrera, I appreciate it. We're going to be right back. Our coverage continuous in a minute.


COOPER: Looking at live images from Asbury Park in New Jersey, where conditions have just been deteriorating over the last two hours. We've been talking for these last two hours that we've been on the air about how bad it looks and how much worse it could get.

We want to put in some perspective though if we get more than 27 inches of snow here in New York, it will be largest snowfall in the city's history, beating a record that was set just nine years ago.

Right now, I want to take a look in other storms in the recent past that have made the records books and the history books.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In 1993, they called it "The Storm of the Century," the major nor'easter hit the entire eastern third of the United States, the severe weather in the South and blizzards in the north. For the first time in history, all major eastern airports were shutdown at the same time. The storm caused more than 300 deaths.

In January 1996, the eastern seaboard was hit by another major nor'easter right on the hills of a government shutdown put the most federal employees on leave. Heavy snowfall and blizzard conditions hit the cities from Washington to New York to Boston. Nine states were declared disaster areas, 60 people died in that storm.

The great blizzard of 2003, started with snow in the Rockies on February 14th. Cold temperature and strong winds turned the storm into a full blown nor'easter that reached its full intensity on President's day February 17th.

More than two feet of snow covered parts of Maryland all the way north to southern New England. Dangerous ice conditions hitting the Carolinas and Virginia, 42 people were killed in this storm.

The biggest winter storm in New York City history hit in February 2006, a system that damps snow across the northeast from Virginia to Maine, 26.9 inches of snow was recorded on a Central Park by the end of the storm. The largest amount of snowfall today.

Three back to back blizzards have hit northeast in February of 2010, each storm bringing prolong periods of heavy snowfall. By the end of the last one, 68 percent of the country was covered in snow.


COOPER: Now we've weathered a lot of storms over the years, no doubt we will weather this one but there's going to be a long night indeed. As Chad Myers was saying, we will expect conditions to just continue to deteriorate all throughout the night. Travel advisories in effect in some areas and more will be starting to come into effect in the next hour and two. That does it for us.

Thanks very much for watching though. Our coverage continuous right now with Don Lemon in the CNN Tonight. Don.