Warnings, Advisories in Effect as Another Winter Storm Takes Aim at Tri-State Area
By WCBS Newsradio 880
NEW YORK (WCBS 880) — Keep those shovels handy!
Another round of winter weather is expected to bring even more snow and mixed precipitation to the Tri-State area.
A winter storm warning has been issued for parts of New Jersey while a winter weather advisory has been issued for New York City, Long Island and other parts of the Tri-State area.
Snow arrived Thursday morning and continued throughout the day, falling heavily at times. It’s expected to change over to sleet, freezing rain or plain old rain along the coast and in the city Thursday night.
“It will accumulate rapidly because it’s very cold out there,” WCBS 880’s Chief Meteorologist Craig Allen said. “The ground will be frozen.”
During the afternoon hours, some of the major roadways, especially if treated, may see slushy or just wet conditions, but most other areas will have slippery or hazardous travel.
Some lingering snow will continue Friday morning before it tapers down to flurries and moves out.
By the time the storm is all said and done, most of the region will see between 4 and 8 inches of snow, with possibly up to a foot well north and west of city.
“I am sure there’s going to be a few areas that come in with 10, 11, 12 inches of snow, especially interior spots where there is absolutely no changeover,” Allen said. “It’s another prolonged event. It starts Thursday morning, it goes right on through into Thursday night and the first part of the Friday commute.”
Strong winds and coastal flooding are not anticipated with the storm.
Utilities, including Con Edison and PSEG, warn the storm may cause tree limbs to break and pull down wires, causing outages.
Utilities have extra crews on the ready to deal with any weather-related issues caused by the snowstorm.
Ahead of the storm, Nassau County rescheduled COVID-19 vaccination appointments.
“We’re going to reschedule at our Nassau County points of distribution, that’s Yes We Can Community Center, the community college and LIU, we’re going to be rescheduling the Thursday and Friday second dose appointments for Monday,” Nassau County Executive Lauran Curran said.
Curran said the county will work with people who can’t reschedule for Monday.
Sites are expected to be up and running Saturday and Sunday.
Nassau Inter-County Express/NICE Bus advises riders to plan for likely delays and detours on Thursday and Friday.
The MTA said articulated buses will be removed from the road starting Wednesday night ahead of the storm and remaining local buses will be fitted with chains. A 35-mph speed restriction on all MTA Bridges will be implemented once the storm begins.
“The service that’s most likely to be affected is buses,” MTA Chairman Pat Foye told WCBS 880. “We don’t expect there will be a significant impact on subway or commuter rail service.”
MTA employees are in force spreading salt and clearing surfaces of snow and ice, keeping signals, switches, and third rails operating. Crews will also remove any downed trees that may fall across tracks and attend to any weather-related challenges during the storm.
The agency is urging customers to stay home and avoid unnecessary travel during the storm.
“While we are encouraging riders to avoid non-essential travel, the system will be running for the essential workers who need it and we do not expect to have to curtail above-ground service given the current forecast,” said Demetrius Crichlow, Acting Executive Vice President of the New York City Transit Department of Subways. “Crews from New York City Transit will be out before, during and after the storm to make sure staircases and platforms are clear, but customers are still encouraged to check for service changes before they travel.”
In New York City, Open Streets and Roadway Dining are suspended Thursday. Sidewalk dining remains open.
Alternate Side Parking Regulations are suspended through Saturday.
Mayor Bill de Blasio said vaccine sites, testing sites and food distribution sites will remain open during the storm. Some testing sites were however closing early.
The New York City Emergency Management Department has also issued a hazardous travel advisory for Thursday and Friday.
“Thursday’s snow may come in fast throughout the afternoon. We are ready to fight it, as we have throughout this busy winter, but we need all New Yorkers to help by staying off the roads and giving us the space and time to do our work,” said Edward Grayson, Commissioner of the New York City Department of Sanitation.
New Jersey State Police responded to 92 crashes and assisted 55 drivers during the early hours of the winter storm.
Gov. Phil Murphy is urging New Jerseyans to stay off the roads.
He also said the snow here and winter storms across the country are further hampering the vaccine distribution.
“This may result in many appointments needing to be rescheduled,” he cautioned.
Due to the storm, vaccine mega sites are closed in New Jersey, except for the hub located at Rowan University in South Jersey.
Warming centers have been opened statewide in New Jersey.
Suffolk County Police responded to dozens of crashes during the storm, many on Sunrise Highway.
County Executive Steve Bellone is warning the storm will last through Friday afternoon on Long Island.
“Right from the outset of this obviously we’re seeing difficult conditions on the roadway, slick conditions, our big concern of course will be the evening commute,” Bellone said.
Westchester County Executive George Latimer has similar concerns.
“It’s gonna take time to try to keep roads clear and we are concerned about the rush hour today. From the county standpoint we’re having our county workforce leave earlier to try to give them a little bit of advanced notice and we encourage people to stay off the roads if they’re not on the roads,” Latimer said. “By the same token if they do have to leave, try to leave befor the heart of rush hour.”
He said the mass vaccination clinic at the Westchester County Center is open until 7 p.m. Thursday.
Hundreds of flights have been canceled at John F. Kennedy, Newark and LaGuardia airports. Travelers are urged to check with their airlines on their flight status.
Saturday will be partly sunny and brisk with highs in the mid-30s.
Sunday is mostly sunny and cold. The high will be 34.
Neil A. Carousso produces and edits WCBS Chief Meteorologist Craig Allen’s forecast videos.