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Flooding a worry for some US East states

February 19, 2014

CONCORD, New Hampshire (AP) — More snow is ahead on Wednesday for residents of northern New England, a day after a fast-moving storm brought about a foot 12 inches (30.5 centimeters) to many communities, but rain and warmer temperatures could threaten floods for other eastern states.

A rain and snow mixture is possible Wednesday afternoon along the northern New England coast, but inland communities could see up to 4 inches (10 centimeters) of snow, said Eric Schwibs, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Gray, Maine. That won’t be nearly as much as the snow from Tuesday’s storm, which packed an unexpected wallop. Forecasts originally called for up to 7 inches (18 centimeters) in the heaviest hit, southern part of New Hampshire, but data collected by the National Weather Service show totals of up to 15.5 inches (40 centimeters). Nearly 10 inches (25 centimeters) fell in Maine.

The latest storm came days after the Southeast and Northeast were paralyzed with heavy snow, ice and massive power outages.

In western Pennsylvania, a chain-reaction crash involving an estimated 50 vehicles closed a 13-mile (20-kilometer) stretch of westbound lanes of an icy interstate highway on Wednesday. There were no immediate reports of serious injuries.

Elsewhere in the country, as warmer temperatures bring rain and melt snow, concerns are being raised about the potential for flooding and collapsing roofs.

In Chicago, the weather service says people who live along rivers and in flood prone areas should prepare for possible flooding as the mounds of snow in yards and along streets melt.

In Ohio, where meteorologists predict a Thursday thunderstorm, there could be up to 1.5 inches (3.8 centimeters) of rain in parts of the state, causing flooding.

The weight of snow on top of buildings in Pennsylvania and Michigan has officials worried after several roofs and awnings have collapsed this winter.

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