US mid-Atlantic, Northeast cargo delays linger after winter storm

Shippers across the U.S. can expect delays this week as the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast dig out from Winter Storm Jonas, which dumped two or more feet of snow on a region stretching from West Virginia to New England and created icy road conditions in an even larger area.

The storm created a multi-day crisis for freight and passenger transportation networks in one of the largest U.S. population centers. Airports from Washington to Boston reported delays and flight cancellations, affecting airports in Chicago, Atlanta, Dallas and other cities.

The Port of New York and New Jersey’s four largest container terminals plan to remain closed Tuesday. Other East Coast ports planned to reopen terminals Monday or Tuesday.

The aftermath of the storm will slow freight pickups and deliveries in the Eastern U.S., but also affect freight moving through and to the region, sending icy ripples through supply chains throughout North America and delaying inbound shipments to major consumer markets.

Trucking companies in the U.S. Northeast are slowly digging out. However, many trucks will have nowhere to go, immediately. Stores and other consignees are likely closed, with parking lots and freight yards still filled with snow. In some areas, road restrictions remain in place.

The storm stranded travelers and truck drivers, including the occupants of more than 500 vehicles that were stuck more than 24 hours on a section of the Pennsylvania Turnpike. Several tractor-trailers reportedly jackknifed on the turnpike, blocking traffic near a tunnel. An estimated 150 to 200 tractor-trailers were also stuck on I-77 in West Virginia during the storm Saturday.