NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — A coating of snow was on the ground across much of the Tri-State area, bitter cold temperatures were expected to stick around for the next few days.

Up to 2 inches of snow fell in parts of the area before the storm moved on its way. Central Park got about half an inch of snow by 4 p.m.

But the major story overnight and for days to come was to be the brutal cold. CBS2 Chief Meteorologist and Weather Producer Giorgio Panetta said the coldest air since the winter blast last year has settled over the area.

LINK: Check The Forecast | PHOTOS: Light Snow Falls Across NY, NJ

Lows were expected to drop into the teens overnight Tuesday into Wednesday, with bitter winds.

And Wednesday night into Thursday, the temperatures in northern suburbs could drop to minus 1, with wind chills making it feel as dangerously cold as 25 below. In the city, temperatures were expected to drop to the single digits and feel like zero.

A Home Depot in Yonkers was just trying to keep up with demand as customers dealt with the snowy sidewalks and frigid temperatures.

“I guess I’m not the only one out here trying to stay warm,” Yonkers resident Delto Nunez said amid shelves that were nearly empty.

The store was restocking its shelves every hour Tuesday with winter essentials.

“Between the snow and all the salt selling out, and the heaters selling out, it’s been very, very busy today at our store,” said Ron Castro of Home Depot.

Staying warm was a little more critical for residents at one Yonkers apartment building. They told CBS2’s Tracee Carrasco the cold snap could not have come at a worse time—they haven’t had heat since December 29.

“That’s eight days with no heat and they’re constantly saying we’re fixing it, we’re fixing it. I called my doctor and an ambulance and I’m going to the hospital, I can’t take no more,” resident Linda Bryan said.

Bryan says the cold building is making her lung condition worse. Other residents in the 129-unit building say they’ve had enough too, despite the building owner’s claim to have fixed the problem.

“We still don’t have heat, it’s real aggravating, it’s frustrating,” resident Joanne Baker said.

WEB EXTRA: NYC Cold Weather Safety Tips & Warming Center Guide

Mayor Bill de Blasio is urging New Yorkers to prepare for bitterly cold weather.

The mayor reminded residents on Tuesday to watch over neighbors and relatives who may be at risk. He also asked that service providers check on their clients.

The city’s emergency weather procedures include increased homeless outreach.

If you know someone who’s vulnerable and lacking heat, help them get to a warm place. Notify the building manager and/or call 311 to get heat restored.

Also, call 911 if you see someone with signs of hypothermia. The symptoms include confusion, shivering, slurred speech and drowsiness.

In Connecticut, a cold-weather protocol activated Tuesday by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy directed state agencies to coordinate with the 211 hotline and the network of shelters to make sure the state’s most vulnerable citizens are protected from the cold weather.

Under the severe cold-weather protocol the state monitors capacity at shelters across Connecticut and works with community-based providers to help find shelter space for those who need it.

Earlier Tuesday, the snow was a pleasurable experience, at least for some. As CBS2’s Scott Rapoport reported, if you’re a kid, a snow day is the best day of the year.

Third graders on the Upper West Side slipped and slid on the ice.

But others found the snow a nuisance.

CBS2’s Christine Sloan was in Clark, New Jersey, where the snow was light enough to sweep with a broom, but many took out shovels and their scrapers anyway.

“Beats the winter we had last year,” one woman said.

‘It’s really light and airy so it’s not bad at all,” said Adam Sherman, of Westfield.

Sherman cleared his entire car, because as New Jersey state law states, you can’t have any snow or ice on the roof, hood or elsewhere while driving. If you do, you can be fined up to $75.

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