Mayor Warns of 'Life or Death' Storm

Snow-covered nuns from the Fraternite Notre Dame in Chicago stand in front of the U.S. Supreme Court on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, following the annual March for Life. Snow began to fall early afternoon as approaching blizzard conditions threatened to shut down the Washington area. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser advised those in the District to "hunker down" and wait out what is forecast to be 2 feet of snow and blizzard conditions Friday and Saturday.  

The storm "has life and death implications, and all the residents of the District of Columbia should treat it that way," Bowser said Friday morning, before the first flakes began to fall.  

“We want people to hunker down, shelter in place and stay off the roads,” Bowser said in a news conference Friday morning.  

Bowser said Friday she has asked for assistance from the National Guard and that residents should expect power outrage thanks to wet snow that could down power lines.Winds of up to 50 mph will create whiteout conditions, the National Weather Service said. The storm was expected to dump as much as 2 feet of snow on Washington. The area's Metro train and bus service was to have shut down Friday night and remain closed for the weekend. Airlines canceled flights in and out of both Reagan National and Dulles International airports.  

American Airlines canceled flights originating out of its Charlotte, N.C., hub and scrapped all service to Reagan National Airport, Washington Dulles International Airport and Baltimore-Washington International Airport for Saturday. United Airlines said it would tentatively resume flights into Dulles on Sunday.  

As many as 29 million people up and down the East Coast could be affected by the storm.

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