Powerful storm set to hit this afternoon

Published on Wednesday, 7 March 2018 12:09
Written by LISA BACKUS


So far this morning it’s been some flakes and wet roads but conditions are expected to deteriorate when a powerful snow storm enters Central Connecticut by early afternoon.

The track of the storm is shifting eastward which could mean eight to 12 inches of snow for the Bristol and New Britain area, according to WFSB-TV meteorologist Mark Dixon.

“The main event is still coming,” Dixon said. “The peak is expected from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. It will be ramping up later this morning.”

The storm may be colder than expected with some thunder snow, Dixon said. Once the heavier snow starts around 12 p.m., it could fall at rates of one, two or three inches an hour, he said.

With snow beginning to fall in much of the state Wednesday morning, all area public schools and colleges have cancelled classes for the day.

Schools weren’t the only schools affected by the impending storm. By 8 a.m., Bradley International Airport said about 27 percent of its Tuesday flights had been cancelled, not including delays.

Governor Dannel Malloy said he will partially activate the state’s Emergency Operations Center at 11 a.m. to monitor storm conditions across the state and prepare for the weather.

The storm is forecast to have a significant impact on afternoon and evening travel, showing a range of accumulation of up to 18 inches across the state. The heaviest amounts of snow will fall across southwestern Connecticut, the Hartford area, and the northern portion of the state.

“We continue to monitor this weather pattern very closely and will have essential personnel at the state’s Emergency Operations Center to better coordinate rapid response to any problems that may arise,” Malloy said Tuesday evening when announcing the opening of the EOC. “We are urging residents to plan ahead and exercise caution if they need to travel – we anticipate rough afternoon conditions as the heaviest of the snow is anticipated to impact the state during the afternoon through the evening.”

According to state officials, the EOC will be staffed with personnel from the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection, the Department of Transportation, the Connecticut National Guard, the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, the Department of Public Health, the Department of Administrative Services and liaisons from Eversource and United Illuminating.

Only 32 outages are reported on the Eversource power outage map as of 8:17 a.m., with those being on the western and eastern borders of the state.

Eversource said yesterday afternoon line and tree crews were ready for the storm today, particularly because electric lines may be more susceptible to damage or outages as a result of last week’s storm.

“We’ll be moving crews into position around the state and we’ll wait to see what Mother Nature has in store for us this time,” said Mitch Gross, Eversource spokesperson, Wednesday morning.

Customers are reminded to have their storm kits ready with water, non-perishable food, medical supplies and fully charged devices.

Any downed wires should be stayed away from and reported immediately to 9-1-1. Outages should be reported to eversource.com or calling 800-286-2000.

Posted in The Bristol Press, , Bristol on Wednesday, 7 March 2018 12:09. Updated: Wednesday, 7 March 2018 12:11.