Storm could leave 18 inches of snow in parts of Connecticut
Below is the most up-to-date information on Wednesday’s snowstorm and its impact to towns and cities in the Fairfield County area.
Update 11:30 p.m.
City offices and facilities will open at noon Thursday.
Public facilities will work overnight clearing snow from city streets. In downtown around 11:15 p.m., most of the roads were cleared or in the process of being cleared by snowplows.
As of 11:25 p.m., approximately 700 people in Bridgeport were without power, United Illuminating estimated.
The town has sustained significant damage, police said. There are “numerous reports of downed trees and power lines,” police indicated.
All unnecessary travel should be avoided, police encouraged, until crews clear the roadways.
The town’s fire and police departments responded to more than 290 calls for service during the evening shift Wednesday. Nearly 90 of those calls — which, police said, are weather-related — are still pending.
All sections of town are affected by downed trees and wires, police said. Many roadways are completely impassable.
The town’s public works and parks department will work throughout the night to clear the roadways, police said.
City police reported several trees and wires down.
Some streets that are affected are Cedarhurst, Dale, Lennox, Tower, Woodruff and Clark. Police said most of these streets are impassable.
There are more than 75 roads in town that, police said, are impassable because of downed trees and wires.
“Please shelter in place and stay off the roads,” police urged.
Mayor Laura Hoydick is opening the town’s Emergency Operations Center. Officials report wires down in several locations throughout the town. Tree limbs with tangled wires are blocking roads, preventing plowing on some roads.
Public works and public safety crews are working with United Illuminating to address outages.
First Selectman Vicki Tesoro said the town is currently in a State of Emergency.
A parking ban remains in effect until further notice to allow snowplows to clear roadways throughout the town. All residents are urged to stay inside until conditions are safe to travel.
Town offices and facilities will open at 10 a.m. Thursday.
It was all hands on deck in Westport’s fire department Wednesday evening. And that meant fire Chief Robert Yost was even taking 911 calls to help dispatchers during the snowstorm.
Update 10:05 p.m.
Public Safety Director Ted Jankowski said North Stamford got hit very hard by heavy snow from 5 p.m. on Wednesday. There are about 150 trees down in the area that took wires down with them.
Jankowski said residents should stay off the roads because there are live wires all over. He said workers are out trying to get to them and make repairs.
Update 10 p.m. — OUTAGES
As of 9:45 p.m., United Illuminating reported 22,030 customers without power.
East Haven: 4
New Haven: 2,307
West Haven: 119
As of 9:45 p.m., Eversource reported 112,465 customers without power.
New Canaan: 1,897
New Fairfield: 36
New Milford: 286
Update 9:20 p.m.
Connecticut State Police:
Calls for service: 954
Motorist assists: 360
Accidents; no injuries: 130
Accidents with injuries: 5
Update 9 p.m.
The First Selectman's office issued a notice around 8:45 p.m. Wednesday stating the snow emergency and on-street parking ban on designated streets will remain in effect until further notice.
Town Hall will have a delayed opening for business on Thursday, March 8, with normal business operations resuming at 10 a.m., but the Emergency Operations Centers is open and staff continues to manage Winter Storm Quinn.
Warming and electronic device charging centers available at the Greenwich Public Safety Complex, 11 Bruce Place. It is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Also open are the Eastern Greenwich Civic Center, 90 Harding Road, Old Greenwich, from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.; the Western Bendheim Civic Center, 449 Pemberwick Road, from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., and the Greenwich Library.
“Thank you to all those who are on the front line ensuring the safety of our residents and addressing this weather event,” said Tesei. “We appreciate residents adhering to the snow emergency and parking ban and ask that they continue to do so, so that the Town can return to normal operations as soon as possible.”
Residents are advised to park their vehicles in their driveways or in their yards to keep banned roads clear. Municipal parking lots are also open to residents, according to the Department of Public Works.
And as per town ordinance, residents must keep their sidewalks clear of ice and snow once the storm ends, before 18 hours have passed.
"The town of Greenwich prohibits plow contractors from pushing snow from driveways or parking lots onto town streets," the notice states. "This practice is dangerous and impedes the town’s snow removal efforts. If there is no other alternative to pushing snow into the street, the private plow driver must plow off the windrow left across the street by re-plowing until the road is safe."
The town also reminds residents that the risk of falling trees and branches is increased with heavy, wet snow.
"If a tree falls on a power line and causes it to come down or block a town road or right-of way," officials wrote, "the situation should be reported immediately. All downed wires should be considered live and avoided."
Snow emergency routes where the parking ban will be enforced are as follows:
Central Greenwich: Amogerone Crossway, Arch Street, Benedict Place, Bolling Place, Brookside Drive, Bruce Park Avenue, Bruce Place, Church Street, Connecticut Avenue, Davis Avenue, East Elm Street, East Putnam Avenue (Maple Ave. to Library), Fawcett Place, Field Point Road, Greenwich Avenue, Grigg Street, Havemeyer Place, Hillside Road, Horseneck Lane, Hunter Place, Lafayette Place, Lake Avenue, Lawrence Street, LeGrande Avenue, Lenox Drive, Lewis Street, Lexington Avenue, Locust Street, Maher Avenue, Maple Avenue, Mason Street, Milbank Avenue, Perryridge Road, Railroad Avenue, Ridge Street, Sherwood Place, Shore Road, Sound View Drive, Steamboat Road, West Elm Street, West Putnam Avenue and William Street.
Byram: Beech Street, Byram road, Cedar Street, Chestnut Street, Church Street West, Delavan Avenue, Division Street West, Hervey Street, Kirby Street, Mead Street, Mill Street, North Water Street, Oak Street, Pine Street, Richland Road, South Water Street, Spruce Street, Western Junior Highway and William Street West.
Chickahominy: Hamilton Avenue, Old Field Point Road and Saint Roch’s Avenue.
Pemberwick: Comly Avenue, Pemberwick Road and Moshier Street.
Glenville: Glenville Road/Street from Glenridge Road to Pemberwick Road, Riversville Road from Glenville Road and the north to entrance to Glenville School.
Cos Cob: Bible Street, East Putnam Avenue (Field Road to Diamond Hill), Loughlin Avenue, Orchard Street, Relay Place, River Road, River Road Extension, Sinawoy Road, Strickland Road, Suburban Avenue and Valley Road.
Riverside and Mianus: Hendrie Avenue, North Sound Beach Avenue and Valley Road.
Old Greenwich: Arcadia Road, Lockwood Avenue, Sound Beach Avenue and West End Avenue.
Update 8 p.m.
A tree reportedly went through a house in Trumbull on White Plains Road, hitting a 30-year-old in the head. The victim is not alert at this time, according to an alert. Emergency medical services are en route.
Update 7:30 p.m.
Connecticut State Police
Calls for service: 514
Accidents no injuries: 104
Motorist assists: 197
Accidents with injuries: 5
United Illuminating reported 12,076 customers without power across the state as of 7:12 p.m. Below is a list of towns and cities who are reporting customers without power. Despite the increase in customers, the individual town outages hadn’t changed.
Eversource reported 23,695 customers without power across the state as of 7:12 p.m. Below is a list of towns and cities who are reporting customers without power...
New Canaan: 777
New Fairfield: 90
New Milford: 213
First Selectman Peter Tesei sent out an alert that damages and weather conditions from Winter Storm Quinn have put the town of Greenwich into a state of local emergency an hour ago.
"I am declaring a local civil preparedness emergency to enable our operating employees to work through this storm event and avail the Town to external resources should the conditions worsen," Tesei wrote in a notice to town employees and emergency responders.
"Presently," he wrote, "there are an increasing number of trees or tree limbs impacting our roadways combined with the heavy snow making operations and response for highway and responders increasingly difficult."
Around the same time, Greenwich Dispatch tweeted, "The roads are slick and dangerous.
"The heavy wet snow is starting to bring down trees all across town. Please limit your driving for emergencies only."
Just a few minutes later a Connecticut Transit bus got stuck on East Putnam Avenue near Hillside Road as a result of the slick conditions.
As of 7:23 p.m., 1,232 homes in Greenwich are without power. Although the number has surpassed 1,000, the town has less outages than neighboring Stamford, 2,214, and Norwalk 1,739.
Contributing to outages are the downed wires across town. About half a dozen reports have been provided to the Greenwich Fire Department within the past few hours.
Update 6:20 p.m.
Police Lt. Paul Resnick said officers are responding non-stop to downed trees and wires across the city. Multiple roads are closed. “Avoid all unnecessary travel,” he warned.
Mayor Mark Boughton said trees are starting to come down in the city.
Update 6 p.m.
“I expect to have our schools open tomorrow (Thursday), but will be up early to check on conditions of roads, parking lots, and sidewalks in terms of safety and readiness to receive our students and staff for an on-time opening,” said Superintendent of Schools Colleen Palmer.
Palmer said no decision would be made Wednesday night and noted that the schools could opt for a one-, two-, or three-hour delay. She posted on Twitter late Tuesday that today’s snow day was the last built into the school calendar. Any subsequent snow days would be made up during spring break.
A lot of incidents of cable and phone wires down in the city, based on police and fire dispatch reports.
All Bridgeport fire personnel have been instructed to put chains on the tires of their rigs.
Laurel Lane is closed in the area of 9 Laurel Lane because of a tree and wires down on the road, police said.
And McFadden Road is closed in the area of 108 McFadden Road for a tree and wires across the road, police said.
There is a tree blocking half of the roadway on Scribner Hill Road.
Update 5:40 p.m.
United Illuminating reported 908 customers without power across the state as of 5:17 p.m. Below is a list of towns and cities who are reporting customers without power...
Eversource reported 4,260 customers without power across the state as of 5:17 p.m. Below is a list of towns and cities who are reporting customers without power...
New Canaan: 182
New Fairfield: 71
New Milford: 55
Update: 5:30 p.m.
The heavy wet snow combined with the strong winds is causing isolated power outages, according to Ted Jankowski, Stamford’s Director of Public Safety, Health and Welfare.
“This wind is kicking up now and the snow is falling really heavy, which is causing some power outages and trees to come down,” Jankowski said.
So far, Jankowski said the city has fielded reports of three downed trees and eight minor motor-vehicle collisions, but added he expects it to get “a lot worse before it gets better.”
Update 4:45 p.m.
Connecticut State Police
Calls for service: 403
Accidents no injuries: 56
Motorist assists: 56
Accidents with injuries: 3
Update 3:55 p.m.
Town police warn that snow is starting to accumulate and it’s going to get “deep, slick and dangerous.” Police urge residents not to take a risk to travel if it isn’t necessary.
“Plan accordingly and wait out the storm,” police said.
The change in the forecast pushed the town to declare a snow emergency and issue parking restrictions for the beach area evacuation routes as of 2 p.m. Wednesday.
Reef Road, Fairfield Beach Road, Rowland Road, Penfield Road and Beach Road are all those affected by the snow emergency declaration, police said. Parking is prohibited on those streets until the town’s Department of Public Works completes snow removal operations.
Residents can park overnight at the Veterans Park and Penfield Pavilion.
The snow emergency was broadcast to residents via the CodeRed system. To sign up for the system, visit www.fpdct.com/codered.
The town issued a parking ban for the remainder of the day Wednesday. All cars, trailers, basketball hoops and other items must be removed from the roadway so the roads can be cleared.
Police encourage people to stay off the roads unless its absolutely necessary to go out.
The police department also asks that residents limit 911 calls strictly to emergencies. Power outages can be reported to power companies, not 911, police remind residents.
Housatonic Area Regional Transit
HARTransit has canceled several routes already and announced there will be no evening or return service for Danbury after 5 p.m.
Update 3:45 p.m.
A downed tree on Creeping Hemlock Drive in Norwalk took down power, phone and cable wires, police Lt. Paul Resnick said.
An Eversource supervisor is on scene. Linemen and tree crews are responding, he said.
As of 3:47 p.m., Eversource reported only two customers without power in Norwalk. It was unclear if those outages had been updated to include those affected by the downed tree and wires.
Bradley International Airport
Bradley International Airport is open and snow removal operations are ongoing.
About 55 percent of Wednesday’s flights were canceled, with the most significant amount in the afternoon and evening schedules.
The airport anticipates the storm will impact Friday morning’s flight schedules, too.
Those scheduled to travel should check with their airline before heading to the airport. Several airlines are issuing travel waivers.
Flight status updates are available at www.flybdl.org. Twitter users can receive automated updates by tweeting their flight number to @BDLFlightInfo.
Update 3:30 p.m.
Avangrid said its Connecticut energy companies — United Illuminating, Southern Connecticut Gas and Connecticut Natural Gas are ready for Wednesday’s snowstorm.
The storm is not only bringing snow, or a wintery mix in some areas, but winds, too.
The companies reminded customers that they should be prepared for the possibility of losing power.
Residents should also remember to keep gas meters, exhaust vents and regulators clear of snow and ice as snow cleanup begins. Blocked vents can cause toxic fumes and carbon monoxide to build up indoors.
UI customers can report outages by calling 800-722-5584.
Storm readiness teams for UI have been holding planning meetings and preparing personnel and equipment to restore any power outages that may result from the storm.
Though the storm hasn’t necessarily packed a wallop in Fairfield County yet, the possibility of up to a foot or more of snow in some areas is still possible.
Deputy Fire Chief Joe Halas called a “Signal 40” earlier in the afternoon. That signal meant all fire and emergency medical service units had to put chains on their tires to ensure safe travel on the snow-covered roads.
Update 3:20 p.m.
Bethel First Selectman Matt Knickerbocker said road conditions are poor and deteriorating, despite the work of highway department crews clearing the roads.
“(Roads) are still very slick and snow covered,” he said. “At this hour, we are still urging people not to go out unless they need to.”
There have not been any major crashes or fires, as of 3:15 p.m. But crews are removing a large tree that fell on Taylor Road. The tree did not cause any power outages, Knickerbocker said.
Ridgefield’s Emergency Manager Dick Aarons said the town will have 35 plowing units on the roads this afternoon and throughout the night.
“They’ll stick it out until its clear and they get the roads open,” he said.
So far, the crews and police have not encountered any major problems except a tree down on Canton Hill Road. Aarons said the tree took some power lines down, but that an officer is on the scene and notified Eversource.
For the most part, Aarons said, there have not been many cars on the roads in Ridgefield.
“The good news is everyone seems to be hunkering down and enjoying an afternoon inside,” he said.
Ridgefield will have about 35 plowing units out throughout the day and into Friday.
"They’ll stick it out until it’s clear and they got the roads open," Aarons said.
Update 3:15 p.m.
Mayor Mark Boughton in Danbury said everything in the city is OK, with no major incidents or accidents to report. He said roads are slippery and there are a few inches of snow on the ground.
The city has about 50 plows out on the roadways Thursday, from the city's official plow trucks to pickups with plows that they've brought on to help out. Those crews will remain working nonstop, except for brief breaks. They’ll be on the roads “until the last flake falls,” Boughton said.
“It’s all hands on deck,” he said.
The weather is expected to get much worse in the city from now until midnight, Boughton said.
The city does not have a deadline to decide whether to have school Friday, or whether to open public buildings. Boughton said the storm will be monitored into the evening and a decision will be made as the forecast changes.
“We'll watch the forecast and see if and how it changes and make a decision tonight,” Boughton said. “If we're really going to get 12 to 18 inches of snow and there's only 3 on the ground so far, it's obviously going to be a big impact on schools and roads and those things.”
Many restaurants on Bedford Street in downtown Stamford opened as planned this afternoon, including Lucky’s Classic Diner, Brother Jimmy’s BBQ and 16 Handles frozen yogurt.
“Got to make a dollar,” said Richie DeCesare who was working in the empty frozen yogurt place in the midst of the storm. “It’s bad, but it’s not as bad as they’re making it out to be.”
Carozza Realty on Summer Street felt the same way and remained open on Wednesday. But some of its employees decided to brave the weather and take a late lunch break on Bradford’s Grill & Tavern on Bedford Street which retained its normal business hours through the storm.
“We were working and got tired of working and decided to get a bite here,” said Chris Carozza who said he expected to also stay at work for the length of the day.
Some residents decided to report to work despite their offices being closed. Sam Gordon, who works for Innovate Stamford, still took meetings even though the Ferguson Library where he’s based was closed.
“I still had two meetings,” Gordon said. “This isn’t nearly as bad as the last (storm).”
The Stamford resident was waiting to meet up with his wife outside the Ferguson Library so the two could enjoy a snowy walk in Mill River Park.
William Fleming, on the other hand, had no choice but to report to work as the caretaker of the Unitarian Universalist Church. Fleming said he came into work around 10, despite the late start of the snow, and got started right away with clearing the sidewalk using a method he came up with five years ago - brushing the snow onto the street with a wide broom.
“It’s easier to push it because it doesn’t get trapped,” he said.
Update 3:05 p.m.
“The snow team will be monitoring through the evening and into the morning,” the Fairfield schools superintendent said.
Update 2:25 p.m.
The town’s First Selectman Jayme Stevenson said, via email, that public works and the police department were prepared for the storm.
“We are in contact with our utility partners if power outages become a problem. I have the ability to contact my colleagues in other communities at any time but only reach out if we have a need for mutual aid. I don’t anticipate that we will need to do that for this storm,” Stevenson said.
Update 2 p.m.
New Milford Mayor Pete Bass said a parking ban, which started at 3 p.m., will be in affect until lifted and crews with plows, sand and salt will be out until the storm passes.
"Crews are going to pretty much work through the night," Bass said.
Bass, in an afternoon call, said it was still too early to tell what other actions he may take Thursday.
Jimmy Izzo, owner of Crossroads Hardware on Main Street said he's well-supplied and prepared for the storm.
"This one being a snow event in March, people don't get as excited and nervous because we have more daylight," Izzo said, adding "people look at it as more of a nuisance."
Izzo's shop is stocked with plenty of shovels, batteries, but doesn't think this storm will be as dangerous as last week's. "I'm hoping this is just a snow event and not a wind, power, flood event," Izzo said.
He reminded people to check the washer fluid in their windshields because it's dangerous to drive in snow when the fluid runs out.
Housatonic Area Regional Transit
Housatonic Area Regional Transit, or HARTransit, is encouraging passengers to stay home as the snowfall increases.
It also warns riders who are already out to return home as soon as possible because it can’t guarantee service later. The buses are already operating on snow routes and there is no service on Coal Pit Road.
“Conditions are deteriorating rapidly,” HARTransit tweeted.
Update 1:40 p.m.
XFinity is offering free WiFi hotspots for residents who might lose power during the storm.
The hotspots are available across 14 northeastern states from Maine through Virginia and the District of Columbia to subscribers and non-subscribers until March 12.
Only a handful of Eversource customers are without power Wednesday afternoon, but the National Weather Service warns outages are likely because of heavy snow falling on power lines and tree limbs.
Xfinity internet customers can sign in with their usernames and passwords, and they will be automatically connected to Xfinity WiFi hotspots in the future.
Non-Xfinity internet subscribers should visit the "Not an Xfinity Internet Customer" section on the sign-in page. Non-customers will be able to renew their complimentary sessions every two hours.
For a map of the Xfinity WiFi hotspots, which are located primarily throughout busy shopping districts and businesses, residents can visit www.Xfinity.com/wifi. Once in range of a hotspot, they should select the "xfinitywifi" network name in the list of available hotspots and then launch a browser.
Update 1:30 p.m.
As the snow ramps up, Greenwich Emergency Management Director Daniel Warzoha says it’s fairly smooth sailing as the town transitions from preparing for snow to actively managing the roads throughout Nor’easter 2.0.
“Things are calm and quiet here actually,” Warzoha said. “The roads are finally snow covered. At some point highway will transition from salting operations to plowing operations, and between them and the Parks Department, they’ll be at it for the duration.”
Much of the seamless work is possible, he said, because schools and town hall are closed and many businesses and offices have people working remotely so traffic is light and making clean-up easier.
"We expect things to stay that way," the director said. "(The forecast) is showing eight to 14 inches. I'm looking at the radar and there is still a significant amount of precipitation way south of us, so it’s going to be a while before this thing wraps up and gets past us. We’re hoping around midnight.”
Update 1:20 p.m.
Public Works Supt. Scott Bartlett said he had his crews sticking close to the highway garage Wednesday morning, as he expects they will have a long night ahead of them. He said he wanted them to avoid getting behind the wheel before they have to go out and plow, so they can be fresh once it starts.
Reports still say it is going to be bad this afternoon and evening, with snow falling one to two inches per hour, Bartlett said, adding the radar seemed to back up that prediction.
Earlier on Thursday, police announced a parking ban on the beach area emergency evacuation routes. Parking for residents is available at Veterans Park.
Update 1:15 p.m.
North Street from Fairfield Road to Maple Avenue will be closed to southbound traffic for the next five to six hours as Eversource makes repairs, according to Greenwich Dispatch’s Twitter. Dispatch is requesting motorists stay off the roads, so Eversource can complete its work safely.
Greenwich has 12 outages, lower than earlier this morning. Meanwhile, New Canaan has 48 outages and New Milford has 16, according to Eversource.
Update 12:55 p.m.
Celebrity Weather Channel meteorologist Jim Cantore, said that those along the shoreline who are looking for the snowfall to begin in earnest won’t have too much longer to wait.
"Don’t worry, it’ll come," he said in a telephone interview with Hearst Connecticut Media at about noon on Wednesday. "Just be patient with it - it’s a little slower than we thought. It can’t miss Connecticut."
Cantore, who was reporting in the field from Bethel, said that people shouldn’t be surprised if they hear thunder and see a flash of lightning.
"You’re looking at the same instability that you might see in a summertime thunderstorm," he said. "And yes, you can get cloud-to ground lightning in a snowstorm. A few years back there was a young man in Maine who was killed by lightning while sledding during a snowstorm.”
Cantore said that there is a possibility of a so-called "dry slot," which is a mass of dry air that forms during a predicted snowstorm, greatly diminishing snowfall.
"That’s why I came to the Danbury area - because there was the possibility of a dry slot forming further east," he said. "The dry slot phenomenon has humbled many a meteorologist."
Update 12:30 p.m.
Gov. Dannel P. Malloy urged drivers to stay off the roads in a noon news briefing.
Malloy has not instituted a highway ban, but recommended residents avoid driving so that crews can clear the roads efficiently. He encouraged employers to allow staff to work from home or alter their hours.
The evening commute could be treacherous, with snow predicted to fall at rates of one to three inches per hour by 1 p.m. in southwestern Connecticut and by 4 p.m. in the Hartford area, he said.
“The impact on the afternoon rush hour will be heavy with several inches on most roads and low visibility by that time,” Malloy said.
Not as many drivers are expected to be on the roads during regular rush hour times because companies sent employees home early and more people were working from home, Malloy said.
"Everyone is responding well," he said.
The state Department of Transportation has 634 plow trucks ready to clear snow and 200 contractor plows that could be called in if necessary. Drivers should not try to pass the plows, Malloy said.
He also cautioned the storm could bring power outages with wind gusts of 30 to 50 mph expected to cause outages. While many crews are ready to restore power, the gusts could delay the process because power crews are not able to get in bucket trucks when it’s at that force.
Update 12:15 p.m.
Although the storm has not been too severe yet, the National Weather Service is predicting even more snow than originally forecasted.
The service advised in an updated winter warning that northern Fairfield and northern New Haven counties could see 13 to 18 inches of snow. Snow could fall at one to three inches per hour this afternoon and into the early evening.
“Travel will be very difficult to impossible, including during the evening commute,” the National Weather Service said.
Meanwhile, nine to 13 inches are anticipated in southern Fairfield and New Haven counties. One to two inches of snow could fall per hour in the afternoon and early evening.
Visibility could be poor, and power outages are possible because of heavy snow weighing down tree limbs, according to the National Weather Service.
Barely a dusting of snow had fallen in Stamford by 9 a.m. on Wednesday, but police were already towing cars off Prospect Street.
Mayor David Martin declared a snow emergency the night before, effective 11 p.m., in light of an anticipated 10 to 15 inches of snow expected to hit the city. On early Wednesday, police had just begun the removal of cars still remaining on designated snow emergency streets. Meters on Prospect Street and Bedford Street were covered with red plastic slips, warning residents not to park there in anticipation of the plows coming by later.
Update 12 p.m.
Though it still doesn’t look like much yet, Ted Jankowski, Stamford Director of Public Safety, Health and Welfare, said "when the storm hits, it’s going to hit hard.
Jankowski said he had just spoken to a National Weather Service meteorologist who reported the storm would begin to ramp up in the early afternoon, bringing one to three inches of snow an hour until about 8 p.m. Wednesday night. Forecasts, Jankowski said, still call for an estimated 10 inches of snow in Stamford, with the possibility of 15.
A press release from the state’s Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection warns the snowfall is expected to "intensify" about 3 p.m. bringing "very heavy" snowfall that is expected to continue through the evening rush hour.
Additionally, a rain and snow line is expected to move into the southeastern Connecticut coastline by 4 p.m., the release states.
"The impact on the afternoon rush hour is forecast to be major with heavy or very heavy snow falling across most of the state, several inches of snow on most roads and near blizzard conditions. Highs are forecast to be in the low 30’s with Northeast winds gusting to 30 miles per hour at times inland and to 30 - 50 miles per hour at times along the coast. The heavy wet snow combined with the strong winds are likely to cause power outages."
"So far, right now, all is going smoothly," Jankowski said. "Our operations crews are out there and ready, all 34 snow routes are covered and all emergency response personnel are prepared and ready to go. When it hits, we’ll be ready to go."
Update 11:45 a.m.
Bradley International Airport
Half of departing and arriving flights at Bradley International Airport have been cancelled as of 11:30 a.m. Some flights are also delayed.
About a quarter of flights had been canceled as of 7:30 a.m.
The airport said in a release that it expects the number of cancelations and delays to change as the storm progresses. Passengers should check with their airline to see if their flight is on schedule.
Several airlines are issuing travel waivers.
Although the weather forecast shows an impending snow storm in Norwalk, the city’s director of public works said the storm might be a bust at this point.
Bruce Chimento and his department expect only about 1 to 4 inches of snow until about 3 p.m.
"And then it’s going to change to rain, and it’ll rain from 3 to 7, and then it’ll change to a light rain and that’s it," Chimento said.
Regardless of what the total snowfall is, Chimento said snow plows and salt trucks are prepared to respond to the storm. Some sidewalks and other areas have been pre-salted.
Norwalk police have also encouraged residents to stay home and to keep off the roads.
Update 11:30 a.m.
First Selectman Pat Del Monaco said the snow has been falling steadily, but so far has not caused problems in town. But she added that hopefully, as the storm picks up, it will not create power outages as last weekend’s nor’easter did for New Fairfield.
“We’ll just have to wait and hope that we don’t lose power again,” she said. The town just recently restored power to its residents and repaired power lines that had gone down during the last storm, Del Monaco said.
On Saturday, the town opened its senior center for about 850 residents who remained without power.
Del Monaco said the back-to-back storms might also put a strain on the town’s salt and sand mixture supply. She said officials will re-evaluate once the snow lets up.
“We are going to have to look at that after the storm,” Del Monaco said. “Like many towns, I think, we are going beyond what we thought we needed.”
Update 11:15 a.m.
For Plaza Restaurant on Railroad Avenue, Wednesday morning was business as usual as the second nor’easter of the season took its time arriving.
There were a few less guests in the booths and sitting on the bar stools during the peak commuting hours, the Kourdis family said. But a storm has never stopped the diner in the past and owners said it’s not stopping them now either.
“We’re open with any weather,” said Kathy Kourdis, “even when it snows. For the last 45 years we’ve been open every day.”
Kourdis’ son Theo, who also works at the restaurant, said they told the rest of their staff to stay home because of concerns for the afternoon commute.
“Everyone was a little let down though” that it’s not snowing yet, he said.
At the bar, Clyde Morris drank a beer. Behind him a stack of local newspapers, including the Greenwich Time, lay strewn on a two-top. He said he isn’t worried about nor’easter 2.0.
“I read (about the storm on) the front page of the Greenwich Time,” he said. “That’s what it says but it’s not necessarily what’s going to happen. There’s no point in worrying about it.
At the Greenwich Train Station across the street, commuters had a similar attitude.
“I’m not concerned,” said Steve Levy, who waited for the 9:15 a.m. train to Grand Central Station wearing his suit and carrying a hardcover novel. “I think taking the train through storms always works.”
Over the loudspeaker at the station, a five-minute delay was announced.
“I know it’s supposed to snow a lot this afternoon,” Levy said, “but the trains will still be going.”
Kristen Fajt, a Greenwich native, and Nick Parker waited for the same train to New York City, where they both work in T.V. production. Although they spent the night in Greenwich Tuesday, where Fajt still has family, the two have plans to stay in the city, where they currently live, to avoid a potentially dangerous commute back to Fairfield County Wednesday night.
“I think we got lucky,” said Fajt. “It’s just going to get worse later.”
Eversource Energy Spokesman Mitch Gross said that there is no way to predict if Wednesday’s storm will wipe out Greenwich like the nor’easter last Friday, but that power has been restored to all customers in town since then and the company is ready for anything.
“We prepare for severe weather every day,” he said. “We wait, we watch, we’re ready. That's all we can do. Our line workers they’re outstanding. We understand our customers’ situation when they lose power. We understand. The guys do everything they can to get the customers back on as quickly and safely as possible.”
And although heavy snowfall has just begun as of 10:30 a.m., he said, “mother nature will determine, mother nature always has the first word and the last word in all of those storms.”
Update 10:25 a.m.
With little to no snowfall in Stamford, commuters are continuing to head into the city and local businesses are beginning to open, despite predictions of up to 15 inches of snow for later in the day.
Lorca, a coffee shop on Bedford Street, was open Wednesday morning around 9 a.m. and said they would decide later in the day if they’d close based on the forecast.
"We post on Instagram, Facebook," said Lorca barista Layna Gatling. "All updates are on social media."
At Sandwich Maestro on Atlantic Street, co-owner Louis Juarez, said business is slower because of the people staying in due to the forecast. But he said the sandwich shop would stay open as planned.
"Our schedule is early," Juarez said. "We close at 4 p.m. For us, it thankfully didn’t affect us. We’re a small business, so we want to stay open as much as we can."
Platforms at the Stamford train station were mostly bare around 9:30 a.m., but a handful of commuters braved the cold temperatures to head into work. Arrival boards showed most of the trains to Grand Central were on time.
Kathie Tallman, who works in broadcast operations at ABC, kept safe from the cold in a platform shelter with a brightly colored duffel bag in tote. Tallman said her company was putting her up in a hotel for the night, should the snow get bad, so she could go into work as planned.
"I’m trying to get there earlier," she said. "Some staff can’t go in because their kids had school cancelled...They want to make sure they have coverage. We’re a 24/7 operation."
Elliot Jordan, who works in finance, was also heading into the city, despite his original plan to work remotely today.
"I’m not nervous," he said. "I was supposed to work from home, but realized there was no snow."
Jordan said it’s normal for his company to allow employees to work from home in inclement weather, but about half choose to go in anyways. But Matt Moradi, who commutes into the city to work in information technology, said he noticed the train platform was quieter than usual in wake of the impending storm.
"My company hasn’t closed," he said. "We’re probably going to have an early dismissal, but it’s business as usual."
Stamford has seen the most snowfall so far in the area, with 1.4 inches, according to the Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow Network. Parts of Bethel have reported 1.3 inches of snow, but most other towns and cities, including Norwalk, have an inch or less.
While the worst of the storm won’t hit Norwalk until after noon, salt trucks and plows have been preparing since early morning.
Vincent Perry and his crew from B & W Paving and Landscaping, LLC, started their day at 5 a.m. and expect to clear parking lots in SoNo and at train stations uptown until midnight or early morning.
"We usually work 18 to 24 hours," Perry said.
Update 9:45 a.m.
Gov. Dannel P. Malloy announced all nonessential state employees will be sent home early in staggered phases of 15-minute intervals beginning at noon.
“After consulting with our emergency management team, we are directing state employees to head home today in staggered phases beginning at noon in order to ensure that folks are off the roads by the rush-hour period when the snowfall is forecast to be at its heaviest,” Malloy said in a statement.
Nonessential, second-shift state employees should not go to work in the evening.
“We are also encouraging private sector businesses to consider similar plans,” Malloy said. “Travel will be dangerous this afternoon with white-out conditions at times - if you do not need to be on the road this afternoon and evening, please stay safely at home.”
Meanwhile, Eversource said power has been restored to all customers after Friday’s storm knocked out power to thousands across the state. The company said on Twitter that it has tree, line and service crews ready to respond to any outages from Wednesday’s storm.
In Ridgefield, police said the snowfall did not cause any problems with the commute this morning. There have been no accidents due to snow so far, police said.
Update 9:15 a.m.
Greenwich Police tweeted they are prepared for the predicted up-to-12-inches of snow, wind, and flooding expected Wednesday, and Greenwich Dispatch tweeted significant progress has been made in clearing roads from the last storm. Now trucks are gearing up for the second nor'easter.
Greenwich Emergency Management Director Daniel Warzoha said commuters should take caution.
“The best advice for commuters is leave plenty of time," he said 9 am. Wednesday. "Right now it's the calm before the storm. The roads are in pretty good shape, our crews are out applying salt to the roads, and travel is pretty decent except for areas where they've got blockages from the previous storm -- but the situation all through the evening commute does not look very promising.”
Warzoha said the existing blockage list won't be ready for another hour, but for people who may need warming and charging stations during the storm Wednesday, the Public Safety Complex at the Greenwich Police Station is open and ready, as well as the Bendheim Western Greenwich Civic Center.
The number of customer outages in Greenwich has increased from 14 to 17 within the past two and a half hours.
Warzoha said a few households needed to be taken offline in order to continue restoration work.
As for Greenwich's emergency preparedness this second go-round, the director said he wouldn't hazard a guess, but that winds up to 45 miles per hour could be detrimental to trees that are already damaged.
“We have damaged trees that are still standing,” he said. “And if we get gusts of wind to 45 mph, that's certainly a concern. But much lesser winds like 15 to 20 miles per hour will help keep the snow off of the white pines and prevent them from snapping so that's not a bad thing.”
Update 9 a.m.
Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton expects the biggest snowfall after 1 p.m., he told meteorologist Jim Cantore in an interview on The Weather Channel.
He said Eversource and public works crews have been busy since last weekend’s storm, but are still ready for this one.
“Nobody’s allowed to go home,” Boughton said. “We keep everybody here ‘til the last flake falls.”
The city also has snowmobiles that can be used to help motorists and residents stuck in the snow, he said.
Meanwhile, snowfall in the Belltown neighborhood of Stamford has been light thus far, with minimal accumulation. Though wet and slippery, the roads so far are clear and traffic appears to be moving normally.
Traffic was lighter than usual on Belltown and Toms roads, two typically-bustling arteries that connect Strawberry Hill Avenue to Hope Street, and the small bodegas and cafe that line Belltown Road near Leonard Street were open for business as usual.
In Redding, First Selectwoman Julia Pemberton posted a message to the town website asking residents to "Stay safe - stay warm!"
This storm comes just a day or so after power was restored to the town from Friday’s storm where about half of the residents lost power. On Tuesday, Pemberton warned residents outages were likely today, too, with 11 inches of wet snow forecast for Redding.
Update 8:45 a.m.
Wind gusts up to 40 to 55 mph in the coastal areas this afternoon and evening could knock down trees and power lines, the National Weather Service reported in its latest update. The heaviest snowfall is expected between 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Southern Fairfield County could also see flooding near the coast this afternoon. The National Weather Service’s Coastal Flood Advisory remains in effect from 2 to 5 p.m.
Norwalk police said it’s been quiet and that no accidents have been reported so far.
However, police reminded drivers to reduce their speed and to keep headlights on as wet conditions persist throughout the city and snowfall is expected to increase after noon.
Update 8:30 a.m.
Some parts of Fairfield County have seen about an inch of snow so far.
Ridgefield has 1.3 inches of snow, while Bethel and Shelton have 1.1 inches, according to the Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow Network. Meanwhile, an inch has fallen on Norwalk and Newtown. The network has also recorded .9 inches in Darien and Brookfield.
Update 8:15 a.m.
Metro-North has canceled the 7:54 a.m. train out of Danbury because of mechanical issues, the railroad said on Twitter. Customers can instead ride the 9:05 a.m. train #1849 from Danbury to South Norwalk.
Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton will also discuss the storm on the Weather Channel with meteorologist Jim Cantore at 8:40 a.m.
Update 8:10 a.m.
All has been quiet in Bethel and Brookfield so far this morning, but police don’t expect it to stay that way for long.
“It’s going to be a long day,” a Bethel police dispatcher joked.
Brookfield police also said there haven’t been any problems with the morning commute.
Update 8 a.m.
The National Weather Service is projecting nine to 14 inches of snow could be dumped on northern Fairfield County Wednesday, according to the latest update. Local accumulations could be even higher.
Meanwhile, the storm could be less severe in southern Fairfield County, where four to eight inches are expected. But local amounts could reach up to 12 inches.
In Danbury, police said the early snowfall has not caused any major crashes or problems. Police said they expect conditions will be better in the morning, but could worsen in the afternoon.
Update 7:45 a.m.
The National Weather Service says that we might hear thunder, too, as the height on the cloud deck will lead to the possibility of lightning at the height of the storm this afternoon.
Bradley International Airport is open, but 27 percent of arriving and departing flights are canceled, the airport announced Wednesday morning.
A small number of flights have also been delayed.
“This may change as the storm progresses and the airlines continue to adjust their schedules,” spokeswoman Alisa Sisic said in a release.
The airport encouraged passengers to check with their airlines before heading to Bradley to see if their flight is still available and whether there are rebooking options. Several airlines are issuing travel waivers, the airport said.
Real time flight status updates are available at www.flybdl.org. Twitter users can also receive automated updates by tweeting their flight number @BDLFlightInfo.
Here we go again.
For the second time in less than a week, Connecticut is bracing for another major storm.
The National Weather Service has issued a winter storm warming for the state, advising that most of interior Connecticut could see between 10 to 15 inches of snow, but snowfall in some towns could be even higher. About 1 to 2 inches per hour can be expected. Many local schools have closed in anticipation.
While snowfall totals are not yet available, a couple inches fell on Danbury overnight. Snow had stopped by 6 a.m. Sunday morning.
State police dispatchers in Southbury and Bridgeport reported no problems or accidents overnight.
Gov. Dannel P. Malloy plans to partially activate the state’s Emergency Operations Center beginning at 11 a.m. Wednesday to monitor storm conditions across the state.
“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,” Malloy said in a statement.
Metro-North is also operating on a reduced weekday schedule with some combined and canceled trains during morning and evening peak times. Service will stop at 8 p.m.