The winter storm has arrived and right on schedule.



Snow began falling in the area between 4 and 5 p.m. and is expected to continue through the night and into tomorrow. Local highway crews have been preparing all day for the winter weather burst. Highway Superintendent for Newark and Arcadia, Dave Harder, said his crews spent the day checking tires, fluids and lights on the trucks, as well as plow blades in preparation.

The winter storm has arrived and right on schedule.

Snow began falling in the area between 4 and 5 p.m. and is expected to continue through the night and into tomorrow. Local highway crews have been preparing all day for the winter weather burst. Highway Superintendent for Newark and Arcadia, Dave Harder, said his crews spent the day checking tires, fluids and lights on the trucks, as well as plow blades in preparation.

“I think we’re about as ready as anybody could be,” he said this afternoon.

Harder said he would be keeping watch on the hour for the snow to begin falling. Once a coating could be seen on the roads he would begin making calls for crews to start their plow routes. Each route takes about 2 1/2 hours, he said.

State snowplows generally pre-salt the roads as part of their prep, but Harder said he feels the 50/50 sand/salt mix works best when its wet. Once through the routes, crews will wait until morning to begin plowing again — around 3 a.m. Then crews will work with brief breaks until the snow stops.

By the time the snow does stop, local snowfall could be above a foot, according to Jack Matthys, CEO/founder of Storm Trackers of Wayne County. Matthys is forecasting the heaviest of snow will fall over night and linger into Thursday morning and at times fall at 1 to 2 inches per hour.

“At this point I am forecasting storm totals of 10 to 17 inches by Friday morning,” Matthys said. “It will be nearly impossible tonight for crews to keep roads clear with heavy snowfall and strong winds. Traveling will be very difficult during this time period if not impossible.”

Matthys also recommends no unnecessary travel tonight an into Thursday morning at the very least. He will also be monitoring how much moisture off Lake Ontario could add to snow totals along the lakeshore and in the snowbelts where lake snow usually hits the hardest.

NYSEG and RG&E emergency planners have been closely monitoring the storm. Strong winds and related tree damage could result in power interruptions. When restoring power, priority are calls for downed wires, then crews assess the damage to the electricity delivery system, develop a detailed restoration plan and make repairs as quickly as possible. NYSEG customers should call (800) 572-1131 to report downed wires; RG&E customers should call (800) 743-1701.

“We first repair the backbone of the electricity system – transmission lines and substations – that bring electricity to the local distribution system that serves our customers,” said Mark S. Lynch, president of NYSEG and RG&E. “We then make any necessary repairs to that system that includes the poles and power lines along streets and roads. As part of this process, we take into account the needs of facilities such as hospitals, nursing homes, fire and police stations. We also focus on our customers who depend on electrically-operated life support equipment. This is a time-proven process that ensures we safely restore service as quickly and efficiently as possible.”

Here is Storm Trackers of Wayne County’s forecast breakdown:

Tonight: Cloudy with periods of snow, becoming heavy at times. Increasing winds and cold, with blowing snow developing, producing blizzard conditions at times and difficult travel, if not impossible.

Thursday: Cloudy with periods of snow. Snow maybe heavy at times in the morning, then easing up during the day. Windy and cold, with blowing snow, producing blizzard conditions at times and difficult travel.

Thursday Night: Cloudy with periods of snow showers / flurries. STORM TOTALS of 10-17 inches by Friday morning. Windy, with areas of blowing snow and cold!

Friday: Cloudy with a few snow showers / flurries. Chilly!