HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Pennsylvania's latest winter storm caused its share of headaches, but left some residents elated as snowfall up to a foot or more kept kids and adults alike home yet again.
Much of central and eastern Pennsylvania was shut down Thursday. Schools closed, businesses shuttered and government workers were told to stay home as the state awoke to perhaps the worst storm of the season — but appeared poised to avoid the power outages and large-scale traffic problems that plagued it last week.
Friday was shaping up to be a similar ghost-town scene in many communities, with many schools and businesses making the call to remain closed or open late because of a second round of snow falling Thursday night into Friday morning.
In New Cumberland, across the Susquehanna River from Harrisburg, people were clearing snow from their driveways even as falling snowflakes piled up on their coats and caps.
"It's like having childhood again," said Kelly Hambright, who cleared off her van Thursday morning as two of her children played in the yard.
"The kids love it, it's a lot of fun and my husband is a snow plower," the 39-year-old said. "This is a blessing for us. I know for everyone else it's a hassle and a pain, but it's been good because in the winter they don't work unless it snows."
Others had nothing good to say about the nasty weather.
Shoveling snow in front of a Philadelphia row house, Ricardo Perez said he was tired before he even started.
Perez said he took a bus from another section of the city to get to work, but the vehicle got stuck. Perez and another man had to help the driver get the bus back on its way.
"So I had to do twice the work the today," he said. "I got here super-tired."
By mid-afternoon, snow amounts ranged from 2.5 inches in Union County, north of State College, to more than 16 inches in the Philadelphia suburb of Uwchlan Township, Chester County.
Gov. Tom Corbett said about 1,600 customers remained without power as of 4 p.m., down from a peak of 5,851 at noon, a far cry from the hundreds of thousands affected by last week's ice storm.
Nearly 800 National Guard troops were deployed to local armories as a precaution against emergencies resulting from the storm, but Corbett spokesman Steve Chizmar said there were no major problems that required their services as of Thursday evening.
"They're there waiting for calls," he said. "I hope we don't get the calls, but we're prepared."
In Hershey, the snow was blamed as the likely cause of a partial collapse of the roof of a maintenance storage facility at the Hershey Nursery on Thursday morning, according to PennLive.com.
No one was injured. Damage was estimated at $70,000, Scott Stein, assistant chief of the Hershey Volunteer Fire Co., told the website.
Kathy Matheson in Philadelphia contributed to this report.