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Winter storm blankets Midwest under several inches of snow, heads east for New Year's

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Posted at 2:15 PM, Dec 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-30 14:16:49-05

A large winter storm blanketed the Midwest Tuesday under several inches of snow and is moving east threatening snow and ice for New Year’s on the east coast.

Hundreds of flights were canceled, coronavirus testing sites and other buildings were closed, and drivers were urged to stay off the roads. The National Weather Service issued winter storm advisories for Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Nebraska and Illinois.

People in Iowa saw about a foot of snow in some places, and parts of Wisconsin and Nebraska saw about eight inches of snow.

Snow was so heavy in western Nebraska Tuesday morning that Interstates 80 and 76 were closed for several hours in both directions after numerous accidents, and the Nebraska Department of Transportation warned people to avoid unnecessary travel.

Snow and ice weighed down power lines, causing power outages around the Midwest, according to News Channel Nebraska.

Forecasts showed the storm would move into the Southern Plains later in the week, when parts of Texas and Oklahoma could receive snow or a wintry mix Wednesday and Thursday. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on Monday placed several state agencies on standby.