Storm brings dangerous conditions across Northeast

Bitter cold is setting in after a major winter storm blanketed a wide swath of the country in snow, sleet and rain this weekend, creating dangerously icy conditions that promise to complicate cleanup efforts and make travel challenging on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Some of the lowest temperatures felt this season started to set in across the Midwest and the Northeast on Sunday and were expected to plunge further overnight.

Wind chills will bring temperatures into the teens in the New York City area and down to 40 below zero in Upstate New York, the National Weather Service predicted.

In New England, they’ll fall to as low as 20 below zero around Boston and as low as 35 below zero in parts of Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont, the service said.

Temperatures across the Great Lakes, the Ohio Valley and the Mid-Atlantic will drop 10 to 20 degrees below average, the service said.

“It’s life-threatening,” said Ray O’Keefe, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Albany. “These are dangerous conditions that we’re going to be in and they’re prolonged.”

The freeze will follow the weekend’s run-ins with power failures, canceled trains and planes, overnight stays at the airport and traffic jams.

Local officials warned residents to limit their time outside to prevent frostbite and to avoid treacherous travel conditions. They also said places could see strong wind gusts, flooding and further power outages.

Utilities in Connecticut reported more than 20,000 customers without power by Sunday afternoon.

Amtrak canceled trains across the Midwest and the Northeast over the weekend, but said that full service would resume Monday. Boston’s transit system urged commuters to allow 10 to 15 minutes of extra travel time and warned of icy conditions for pedestrians come Monday.

The storm — caused by the clash of an Arctic high-pressure system with a low-pressure system coming through the Ohio Valley — wreaked havoc on air travel and other forms of transportation all weekend.

More than 1,500 flights were canceled nationwide Sunday, according to FlightAware, a flight tracking company.

— Associated Press

Man kills 4 members of his family

A rural Oregon man killed four members of his family at the home they shared and was shot by sheriff’s deputies as he tried to kill a girl, authorities said.

Mark Leo Gregory Gago, 42, killed his parents, his girlfriend and their infant daughter Saturday night before deputies shot him, the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office said.

The victims were not shot, the Oregonian reported. Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Brian Jensen said the causes of death are being investigated.

“We’re not sure what was used at this time,” Jensen told reporters near the scene Sunday. “I’ve been told that there were numerous weapons, swords, things of that nature in the residence. The investigators are trying to determine what exactly was used to kill each person.”

The sheriff’s office identified the victims as Olivia Gago, 9 months, Shaina Sweitzer, 31, Jerry Bremer, 66, and Pamela Bremer, 64.

The home is about 20 miles south of Portland and northeast of the city of Woodburn.

The sheriff’s office took an emergency call from a resident of a home about 10:15 p.m. Saturday. The caller described a violent and hectic scene, Jensen said. Arriving deputies found a woman dead outside the home and Gago attacking the child. The 8-year-old child was Sweitzer’s daughter from a previous relationship.

A roommate also survived. She suffered what deputies described as injuries that did not appear to be life-threatening. She was being treated at a hospital.

Gago had been arrested in August on a weapons charge. Jensen said by email that Gago was booked on a charge of unlawful possession of a weapon. He did not have details about the arrest.

— Associated Press

Teachers union, district officials meet

Teams from the Los Angeles Unified School District and the teachers union worked long hours over the weekend to settle a teachers strike that has cost students five days of normal instruction.

The office of Mayor Eric Garcetti (D), which is mediating the talks, has been sending out the news of when the negotiating sessions start and stop. With both sides honoring a confidentiality agreement, that is just about the only information being released.

The long meetings could be seen as an indication of serious intent to settle, perhaps even a sign of progress. They also suggest the difficulty of reaching a settlement in time for teachers to return to classrooms Tuesday, after the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday.

The broad outlines of the bargaining are well known. L.A. Unified has wanted the talks to be as narrow as possible, focusing on salary and a few proposals from each side. The union has a longer list of demands, including an increased role in decision-making — and has framed its fight as a struggle to safeguard the future of public education.

Both sides have moved toward middle ground in the past two weeks. For example, the union has dropped a proposal for teachers to have more control over the amount of standardized testing of students.

— Associated Press