Hundreds of thousands of power outages have been reported across Kansas, Missouri, Virginia and North Carolina, according to Poweroutage.us, and over 650 flights have been canceled as over 1,100 have experienced delays across the USA on Sunday as of 12 p.m. EST, according to FlightAware.
There are more than 40 million now under winter storm alerts, in what is the first big winter storm of the season for most areas. Although the Kansas City area is expected to get up to 6 inches of snow, it should be over by the time the Kansas City Chiefs begin their National Football League playoff game against the Indianapolis Colts on Saturday afternoon.
Snow will reach the mid-Atlantic by late Saturday through Sunday, but snow totals will be lower there. Lower accumulations are expected in DE and Baltimore, as well as around Richmond, where precipitation Sunday should be freezing rain.
Between 5 to 10 inches of snow is expected to fall in the Mid-Atlantic on Sunday.
At least seven people have died, including five who were killed in crashes on slick roadways in Kansas and Missouri.
The National Weather Service (NWS) reported that Northern Missouri and central IL will be hit the hardest.
More than 90 motorists were stranded and four others injured as the snow gripped roads.
The storm is also blamed for the deaths of at least 10 people, who died in weather-related crashes, including an IL state trooper, according to The Weather Channel.
The storm moved into Kansas and Nebraska from the Rockies on Friday, then east into Missouri and IL. The storm covered roads and made driving risky, Xinhua news agency reported on Sunday.
Snow totals are to taper to the northeast with parts of southwest IL forecast to receive up to 9 inches and the Chicago area expected to get between 1 and 4 inches. Another woman died when her auto slid on US 24 in northern Missouri and was hit by an oncoming SUV.
In Kansas, three people died Friday in traffic accidents, authorities said Saturday: A 62-year-old man in a vehicle that struck a barrier wall on the Kansas Turnpike, a semi-truck driver whose vehicle collided with another truck and a driver whose vehicle struck an oncoming vehicle and ran into a ditch.
Drivers weren't the only ones negatively affected by the extreme weather conditions: Dozens of flights were cancelled at St. Louis Lambert International Airport, which described the snowstorm as one of the largest on record.
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam also declared a state of emergency Saturday night in order to allow the state to be better prepared to respond to the storm.
"We're anticipating still more snow through today, so we're asking motorists to stay home until the roads are cleared, " said Missouri State Highway Patrol Sgt. Collin Stosberg, stationed in suburban Kansas City.
In central Missouri, officials said about 12,000 households and businesses were without power in Columbia and the surrounding area. A winter weather advisory was in effect for Bloomington, Peoria and areas north.