BOSTON (AP) - A wind-driven winter storm brought blizzard conditions to Cape Cod and threatened to drop more than a foot of snow on southeastern Massachusetts on Monday. Motorists in New England were warned to be vigilant after a charter bus heading to a casino skidded off a Connecticut highway, injuring at least 30 people.
In New Hampshire, the storm could last into early Tuesday, when the state’s first-in-the-nation presidential primary is held. Police in Hampstead on Monday turned away people from a full coffee shop where Republican candidate Chris Christie was making a campaign stop.
One woman lamented that she couldn’t stand out in the cold because she has asthma, but authorities were adamant that no one else would be allowed in because doing so would violate fire codes.
Driving on treacherous roads caused accidents across the region. In Connecticut, a bus carrying about 70 passengers from New York City to the Mohegan Sun casino crashed on a snowy Interstate 95 and fell on its side in Madison. At least 30 people were injured, and the northbound side of I-95 there shut down.
Some areas of the Cape and Martha’s Vineyard had about 9 inches of snow Monday evening. The National Weather Service said the islands appeared to have met the conditions for a blizzard.
Boston could see 6 to 10 inches, and areas south of Boston were getting moderate coastal flooding.
In Rhode Island, crowds of mourners lined the streets amid bitter temperatures and falling snow to bid farewell to former Providence Mayor Buddy Cianci, whose casket was carried by horse-drawn carriage from City Hall to the city’s Roman Catholic cathedral.
Other parts of the Northeast, including Northern New England and the New York City area, were expected to get much less snow. New York City, Philadelphia and northern New Jersey could get 2 to 3 inches from Monday into Tuesday night, the weather service said.
Elsewhere, the snow meant unpleasant outdoor work for some workers.
Sean Nardone, a custodian for the U.S. Postal Service, was scheduled to spend the day shoveling and treating the front steps of several post offices south of Boston.
“I don’t like it very much,” Nardone said as he tossed rock salt on the steps of the Whitman post office while a howling wind blew.
“I hope global warming friggin’ helps out this winter,” he said. “I hate to sound selfish, but I could use some warmth.”
Raj Patel, who co-owns a convenience store in Whitman, said the storm is good for business.
“It’s convenient for the neighborhood. We are always open for them. In past storms, we’ve sold out of milk right away. Milk, bread, water - a lot of people walk from their homes, so we stay open,” he said.
Communities across the region closed schools and issued on-street parking bans.
Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker closed state offices in nine counties Monday, and state courts were closed in 10 counties.
Boston’s Logan Airport remained open, but hundreds of inbound and outbound flights were canceled.
The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, which was crippled by a series of historic storms during Boston’s record-breaking winter last year, was operating on a normal weekday schedule with winter routes in effect for buses. Although there were delays, no major problems were reported.
Chinda Trate, 27, said her train ride from Lowell, about 30 miles northwest of downtown, was uneventful. She arrived on time for work after catching her usual morning train.
“It’s just another day for me so far,” she said as she took a late afternoon break from work at a downtown law firm. “We live in New England, so you kind of expect this kind of weather.”
Associated Press writers Bob Salsberg and Philip Marcelo in Boston; Denise Lavoie in Whitman, Massachusetts; Kathy McCormack in Concord, New Hampshire; Holly Ramer in Hampstead, New Hampshire; and Pat Eaton-Robb in Hartford, Connecticut, contributed to this report.
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