Big winter blast leaves Lowcountry out in the cold

Workers attach snow plows to trucks at a New Jersey Dept. of Transportation maintenance yard, Monday, Jan. 26, 2015, in Newark, N.J. New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie declared a state of emergency saying NJ Transit will shut down late Monday as a winter storm threatens to dump as much as two feet of snow over parts of the state. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)

Mel Evans

No, no, no, not even a flurry. The snow storm sweeping the Northeast is taking a cold swipe at the Lowcountry but there’s nothing up there to fall.

Meanwhile, relatives here with family up north are pretty much taking the whole thing in stride, another big snow in a region that’s accustomed to them — pretty much. Long distance phone lines to New Jersey rang busy for a while Monday as the white stuff started to clump.

Gale force coastal winds and a blizzard dumping one to three feet of snow were expected Monday and Tuesday as a mean nor’easter bore down on New England and upper Mid-Atlantic states, funneled partly by a storm front moving out of the Carolinas.

But one local resident who responded to a Twitter post looking for family members said a son and daughter-in-law live in Brooklyn, N.Y., and the son’s biggest concern was buying beer.

Another resident, John Strubel talked to his mom, who still lives in the Mechanicville, N.Y., community he grew up in near Albany. She postponed two Tuesday doctor’s appointments, but then she’s 85 years old.

"School is open today and tentatively it’s open tomorrow," said Strubel, a Charleston Southern University integrated marketing director on Monday. His brother in New Haven, Conn., a Long Island Sound city where heavy snow was expected, "is taking it hour-to-hour," Strubel said.

 

The biggest jolt to the Lowcountry from the blast might be in the matrix of more than 5,000 flight cancellations and lost connecting flights nationwide. Charleston International Airport officials urged people waiting to fly or expecting incoming flights to keep up with the most current information.

"We’re telling people to be aware. Don’t make a wasted trip to the airport," said Paul Campbell, airport director. Even flights south and west could be disrupted, he said. But Campbell expected few if any travelers to be stranded in the concourse. Information desk and other employees will be there to help them.

"By and large there’s a lot more comfortable places to be stranded," he said.

As for the skies here, "it’s just a series of re-surfacing cold fronts coming through this week," said meteorologist John Quagliariello, National Weather Service, Charleston. A five-to-10 degree drop in highs and lows can be expected through Wednesday. Winds won’t be a factor.

"It’ll be cold enough tomorrow for snow," he said Monday. "But we’re not going to have it."

Reach Bo Petersen at 937-5744, @bopete on twitter or Bo Petersen Reporting on Facebook.