Go home. Stay there. Seriously. That's the message government officials across the Northeast offered residents Monday ahead ofwhat could be a blizzard of historic proportions bearing down on the region.
"What you're going to see in the (next) few hours is something that hits very hard and very fast and people cannot be caught off guard," New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said, warning that mass transit options will begin to dwindle as the night wears on.
Private cars will be banned from using city streets as of 11 p.m, he said.
The National Weather Service, which isn't prone to exaggeration, is using terms like "life-threatening" and "historic" to describe the weather system taking aim at the Northeast -- with the worst expected to hit Monday night into Tuesday.
"This is going to be a lot of snow, no matter how you add it up, so we are going to be challenged," New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said.
In New York, Gov. Andrew Cuomo declared a state of emergency, called out the National Guard and said he may order everyone to stay put later tonight, as governors in Connecticut and Massachusetts had already done.
In Philadelphia, Mayor Michael Nutter declared a snow emergency starting at 6 p.m. ET Monday. Cars left parked on snow emergency routes will be towed and owners ticketed, he said.