Record-breaking snowstorm batters New England

(CBS News) BOSTON - Residents were digging out Saturday from nearly 3 feet of snow that fell across the northeast, so much that snowplows could barely keep up, and even first responders were stranded.

Portland, Maine, got nearly 30 inches of snow, breaking a 1979 record.

High tides and high winds along the Massachusetts coastline forced some residents to evacuate.

"The storm has largely passed through the commonwealth now," said Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick. "We're still dealing with some issues around coastal flooding."

Nearly 600,000 customers across four states lost power. In Quincy, Mass., almost the entire city was in the dark.

The calls for help streamed into the emergency operations center, most from residents stranded at home with no heat.

Behemoth storm dumps snow on Northeast

Officer Sheryl Potter evacuated Joanie Alvarado and her baby daughter. It was Potter's 10th rescue of the day.

She said she hadn't seen anything like this in her lifetime.

Heavy, wet snow and hurricane-force wind gusts toppled trees and power lines.

Nancy Reed, president of the power company for the region, said it could be Monday or Tuesday before the power comes back.

"People need to brace themselves, and they need to find shelter if they're cold," she said.

Alvarado and her daughter will spend the night in the gym of a local high school until power is restored.

To help Massachusetts get power restored, New York's governor is promising to send utility workers to help in the cleanup. Temperatures in the Boston area are forecast to be in the teens and the single digits Saturday night.

  • Terrell Brown

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