CHARLESTON, W.Va. - The remnants of Hurricane Sandy drifted northward Wednesday, leaving at least six dead and about a half million without power in West Virginia.
Thousands of West Virginians can expect to be without power through the weekend. Those living in the hard-hit higher elevations remain boxed in by snow and fallen trees.
Speaking during a tour in the disaster-stricken Northeast, President Barack Obama said his "main focus" included New Jersey, New York, Connecticut and West Virginia.
Those other states were rocked by wind and rain, but it was snow that hammered West Virginia's eastern mountains. The largest snowfall was reported in Nicholas County, which received about three feet near Richwood.
Officials in West Virginia began to turn their attention Wednesday to what happens when all that snow melts.
Floods are expected if the snow rapidly melts.
The snowfall in the state's hardest hit areas will produce 4-6 inches of water once it melts. There were widespread expectations, but no formal warnings for floods Wednesday.
Temperatures are expected to rise into the 40s and 50s by Saturday.
"It will be a pretty steady stream of water running into the rivers between now and then," said Jonathan Wolfe, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service.
More showers are expected this weekend. A little storm system is expected to bring some scattered showers on Friday. Another may bring less than an inch Sunday, Wolfe said.
He said problems could be particularly acute if the snow did not melt by the time the showers came. In that scenario, melted snow and rain would run off at the same time.
As for the power outages, about a half million people were affected by homes without service Wednesday.
In Appalachian Power Co.'s territory in southern West Virginia, about 111,000 households and businesses were in the dark, down from 182,000 at lunchtime Tuesday.
Some areas - including Kanawha County, which had 23,000 customers without power Wednesday night - were not expected to be fully back on the grid until Sunday night.
In the northern part of the state, FirstEnergy said about 108,000 businesses and households were without power, including nearly all of its customers in the hard-hit mountains.
The company's outages included nearly 16,000 homes and businesses in Randolph, a county of fewer than 30,000 people; and 7,200 homes and businesses in Pocahontas County, home to only 8,700 people and Snowshoe ski resort.
In the northeastern United States, emergency crews were calling for aid from other states, but West Virginia officials urged caution before counties let first responders go because of the flooding potential at home.
"Right now we're not sending any assets out because we don't know what shape we're in," state homeland security official Herbert Lattimore Jr. told county emergency officials Wednesday evening.