The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Breaking News

February 7, 2013

Northeast readies for first major snowstorm of year

BOSTON — People in the Northeast stocked up on food and supplies and road crews readied salt and sand Thursday as the region braced for a major winter storm that could bring up to 2 feet of snow to places that haven't seen significant accumulations in more than a year.

The National Weather Service said most of southern New England could see anywhere from 18-24 inches between Friday and Saturday, and some other forecasts cautioned that totals could be even higher. Suffolk County in New York was under a blizzard watch, as were parts of Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island.

New York City was expecting between 4 and 6 inches of snow. Mayor Michael Bloomberg said plows and 250,000 tons of salt were being put on standby to start clearing the streets.

"We hope forecasts are exaggerating the amount of snow, but you never can tell," he said, adding that if bad weather has to happen, it's better to have it on a weekend.

Meteorologist William Babcock with the National Weather Service in Taunton, Mass., says it's looking like it is going to be a very powerful storm. If everything falls the way it has the potential to it could be among the top 10 snowstorms in New England history.

The storm would hit just after the 35th anniversary of the historic blizzard of 1978, which paralyzed the region with more than 2 feet of snow and hurricane force winds from Feb. 5-7. The last major snowstorm in southern New England was the Halloween storm in 2011, which knocked out power to many with heavy, wet snow.

The snow will start Friday morning, with the heaviest amounts dumped on the region that night and into Saturday.

In Massachusetts, Gov. Deval Patrick was receiving regular updates but had not made any decisions about the state's workforce, a spokeswoman said.

The prospective timing has drawn comparisons with a powerful storm that hit in the afternoon of December 13th, 2007, and paralyzed state highways, turning 30-minute commutes into 3- to 6-hour treks.

On that day, Patrick advised state employees to leave work no later than 11:30 a.m., and private businesses were encouraged to dismiss their employees early as well. Many people, however, apparently waited longer to get on the road and by then, snow was falling at a rate of 1 1/2 inches an hour with virtual white-out conditions. The resulting traffic gridlock made it impossible for plows to clear the roads.

One place people were excited about the snow was at ski resorts in northern New England. Because they can make their own snow, they aren't as dependent on natural snowfall, but when it snows a lot in southern New England people start thinking more about winter sports, said spokesman Dave Meeker of Mount Snow in Vermont.

"When they have snow in their backyards, they're inspired," he said.

At the Dartmouth Skiway in Lyme, N.H., Dartmouth College senior Evan Diamond and other members of the school's ski team were getting ready for the college's Winter Carnival, which includes ski races.

"We're pretty excited about it because this has been an unusual winter for us," he said. "We've been going back and forth between having really solid cold snaps and then the rain washing everything away."

As much as he welcomes the snow, it could be too much of a good thing, at least for this weekend, "For skiing we like to have a nice hard surface, so it will be kind of tough to get the hill ready."

 

1
Text Only
Breaking News
Featured Ads
More Resources from The Herald Bulletin
AP Video
Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Helium debate
Helium
Front page
Poll

About 70 houses in the city will be demolished with a federal loan initiative administered by the state. How many more houses in the city do you think need to be razed?

At least 70 more
200 to 500 more
1,000
None
     View Results