BOSTON (AP) – A northeast that hit the Atlantic coast with hurricane-force gusts of wind has left more than half a million homes and businesses without power in New England and forced the shutdown of bridges, ferries and schools in the area Wednesday.

Utility workers worked to restore power as the storm’s winds and rain, which were felt as far as Nova Scotia, abated throughout the day. Restoring power to the hardest hit areas of southeastern Massachusetts will take days, the Eversource utility told the Cape Cod Hours.

The Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency reported about 425,000 power outages after strong winds blew heavy, wet leaf-laden tree branches onto power lines. Utilities reported about 90,000 customers without power in Rhode Island, 17,000 in Maine, 15,000 in Connecticut and 6,000 in New Hampshire.

Authorities have advised against traveling to southeastern Massachusetts because of the wind, overturned trees, and downed power lines. At New Bedford Airport, the the wind knocked down a small plane on a fence.

The highest storm gust was recorded at 94 mph at a ferry dock on the island of Martha’s Vineyard, officials said.

Dozens of schools have canceled classes. In Connecticut, power lines fell on a school bus heading to Middletown High School. No injuries were reported. Six students were on the bus, which continued on after emergency responders removed power lines.

In Rhode Island, authorities closed the Newport Pell and Jamestown Verrazzano bridges amid wind gusts of up to 70 mph early Wednesday, then reopened them soon after to most vehicles. School buses were only allowed to cross on Wednesday afternoon.

Ferry service to Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket Islands was suspended on Wednesday.

A driver was killed and another injured when a tree branch fell on two passing vehicles in Morris Township in northern New Jersey, authorities said.

The body of a kayaker missing off New York’s Long Island has been found near the Bronx after being spotted in the water by a helicopter search team, Coast Guard officials said on Tuesday. Laurence Broderick, 45, was reported missing Tuesday morning.


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