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Heavy snowstorm to hit Washington, flights cancelled

Thousands of flights remain grounded and there is traffic chaos as a fierce storm in the midwest of the United States heads east towards Washington DC.

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Mike Davis clears snow from the Millennium Park skating rink on March 5, 2013 in Chicago, Illinois. The worst winter storm of the season is expected to dump 7-10 inches of snow on the Chicago area with the worst expected for the evening. (Brian Kersey/AFP/Getty Images)

Washington was bracing for its heaviest snowfall in two years Wednesday as a large storm from the midwest of the United States moved east.

More than 1000 flights were cancelled and there was traffic chaos across the US ahead of the storm, which was expected to peak in the US capital by midday, the National Weather Service said, Reuters reported.

The storm, which set snowfall records in Chicago Tuesday, was predicted to dump up to 20 inches of snow west of Washington, but according to the National Weather Service, it could turn into a mix of rain and snow.

CNN reported  power outages continued, with at least 4,723 customers in the dark in Virginia.

Schools were closed in the capital Columbus and the federal government has shut offices for the day.

As of Wednesday morning, about 1,350 flights had been cancelled and 105 delayed in the United States, according to flight-tracking firm FlightStats.com, News-press reported.

The storm, which brought with it strong gusty wind and snow, disrupted the morning commute for many, and caused widespread traffic delays. 

The weather service said the snowfall could be the heaviest in Washington in two years.

More from GlobalPost: Massive winter storm grounds 2,600 US flights

In New York, the storm was expected to hit Wednesday night and into Thursday, with Jersey shore towns, hard-hit by Superstorm Sandy, again on high alert for flooding. 

Weather experts have forecast wind gusts of up to 50 mph, and warned of coastal flooding.

Emergency personel called for voluntary evacuations in the flood-prone areas of Brick Township and Toms River, Fox News reported.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/united-states/130306/heavy-snowstorm-hit-washington-flights-cancelled