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Snow Hub: Roads Slick, I-84 Closed to Commercial Trucks

There's a 100-percent chance of snow in the Southeast-Brewster area Friday. Check Patch for the latest in road conditions, cancellations and closures.

Cancellations, Closures

  • All branches of Putnam County Savings Bank (including the one in Southeast) will close at 2 p.m., according to WHUD.
  • Brewster Central Schools will be closed Friday. Carmel and Mahopac will be closed, too.
  • Brewster Public Library will be closed Friday.
  • Offices for the Sheet Metal Workers Union No. 38 in Southeast will be closed Friday.
  • Patterson Library will be closed Friday.
  • The Katonah Museum of Art (where Putnam students are showcasing their work) will be closed Friday and Saturday; Friday's Stroller Tour is cancelled and Saturday's Picture This will be rescheduled for Spring.   

Helpful Links

Updates

[Update, 5:45 p.m. Friday] Gov. Andrew Cuomo has declared a state of emergency. New York State Police issued an advisory stating that travel conditions are continuing to deteriorate. There have been approximately 100 minor accidents in the lower Hudson Valley region, as well as numerous disabled vehicles.

All roadways remain open to passenger traffic although traffic is moving slow. I-84 remains closed to commercial traffic from the Pennsylvania state line to the Connecticut state line due to winter weather conditions. Although, the roadways remain open, motorists are urged to drive with caution and to avoid unnecessary travel and anticipate that interstates and parkways may be subject to immediate and unplanned closure to facilitate snow removal operations. 

[Update, 4:15 p.m. Friday] Interstate 84, from the Connecticut state line to the Pennsylvania state line, is closed to commercial truck traffic, state police said at about 4:10 p.m.

"The New York State Department of Transportation and the New York State Police have directed that Interstate 84 from the Pennsylvania state line to the Connecticut state line is closed to commercial truck traffic due to the winter weather conditions.

All commercial vehicles including large trucks (over 26,000 pounds GCWR/GVWR), tractors, tractor trailers and buses will not be permitted on the 70-mile stretch of highway effective immediately. The ban will remain in effect until further notice.

All motorists are reminded to drive with caution and to avoid unnecessary travel. It is anticipated that travel conditions will continue to deteriorate rapidly."

[Update, 3 p.m. Friday] Village of Brewster offices are closed, as are the Town of Southeast offices.

Here is the latest alert from officials:

"State Police advise that snowfall totals continue to increase. Area roadways are slippery, but passable. All major roadways in Troop K remain open at this time., although these roadways are subject to immediate closure as conditions worsen. Motorists are reminded to drive with caution and to any avoid unnecessary travel. It is anticipated that travel conditions will deteriorate rapidly. "

[Update, 2:15 p.m. Friday] Southeast Highway Department Superintendent Kevin Palmer said his department spent the morning laying salt on the roads. There are about 90 of them in the town.

The plan for the rest of the day is to routinely check the roads, while keeping the plows and salt moving. Palmer has 500 tons of salt on hand, and he anticipates that the crews will use all of it. Another 500 tons are on the way.

When asked if there's anything residents could do to help the cleanup, Palmer said what many others are stressing: "Stay home."

"Keep the cars off the road," he said.

Plenty of folks were still out and about during the early afternoon. The parking lot at Kobacker's Market in Brewster was full, and shoppers were stocking up on groceries.

"It's been really busy in here today," Leah Duddie, one of the managers, said. "Yesterday it was a zoo."

On Thursday, the shop nearly sold out of bread and other popular items. Duddie said the store will remain open "as long as possible" Friday, and that shoppers should double check before they come out Saturday morning because a late opening is possible. 

Items were moving off the shelves at Home Depot in Southeast. A manager there said Thursday was particularly busy, and that foot traffic was sporadic Friday. Most people were purchasing "winter essentials," like salt and shovels, as well as generators.

Others bought materials for stoves that burn wood pellets. Flashlights were popular too.

For the most part, the store had a good inventory of items, including about a dozen snow blowers. 

[Update, 12 p.m. Friday] New York State Police have issued another advisory:

In anticipation of significant snowfall totals and high winds the New York State Police in Troop K are expecting road closures on I-84, the Taconic State Parkway and I-684.  All vehicular traffic is advised to avoid these roadways.  Motorists should refrain from all unnecessary travel.  Extra troopers have been brought into the region to assist with these efforts.

[Update, 11:40 a.m. Friday] Route 311 is reopened.

[Update, 10:50 a.m. Friday] New York State Police have issued another advisory urging folks to avoid being on the roads. If that's not possible, they say, use caution.

"...Be aware of changing weather and roadway conditions. Remember bridge and exit and entrance ramps can be icy when other road surfaces are not. Clean all snow and ice from the entire vehicle and ensure the windshield is clear of frost. If you do become stranded, stay with your vehicle and in an emergency dial 911."

There will be a "full complement of troopers and supervisors assigned to all shifts in preparation of a winter storm approaching the region."

[Update, 10:25 a.m. Friday] Flurries continue to fall in Brewster and the greater Putnam area. No accumulation yet, and sidewalks and streets are clear but wet (see video at right).

Route 311 in Patterson was closed in both directions at Front Street at 9:42 a.m. for up to two hours due to a malfunctioning railroad gate, according to the New York State Department of Transportation. Officials say a local detour is in effect.

[Update, 8:45 a.m. Friday] Flurries started in Brewster just before 8 a.m. All local school districts (Brewster, Carmel and Mahopac) are closed, as is the Brewster Public Library. A list of additional closures is available below.

Brewster and Southeast municipal offices are open at the moment. Personnel at both said that could change later in the day.

Mayor Jim Schoenig said the village's Department of Public Works, which is made up of a handful of employees, was busy preparing for the storm Thursday to ensure things run as smoothly as possible.

"The big part is going to be making sure the guys can grab rest when they can because it looks like we are in for a long day with this storm," he said. "As always, we ask people not to throw their snow into the streets, and if they are caught, tickets will be issued."

Schoenig also reminded residents that cars parked on side streets after 11 p.m., and on Main Street after 2 a.m., are in violation of winter parking rules, which means penalties and towing.

[Original story, 8:50 p.m. Thursday] There's little doubt Putnam and Northern Westchester will get hit with a snowstorm Friday night. 

The National Weather Service as of 8 p.m. Thursday has predicted the snow to start falling after 3 a.m. Friday. The real accumulation won't begin until later in the day, when the snow is falling so fast it could add up to anywhere from three to seven inches in Brewster and the surrounding area.

Starting after the evening commute, snow falls heavily, combined with strong wind gusts of up to 43 mph could create blustery, blizzard-like conditions. There's a 100 percent chance of snow and an additional 8 to 12 inches are possible.

NYSEG released a statement Thursday, saying they are on heightened alert.

“Every hour of every day, we are prepared to respond to power interruptions, but in a case like this all of our employees across the state are on heightened alert,” said Mark S. Lynch, president of NYSEG and RG&E. “Our customer relations centers and operations personnel are prepared, and we are ensuring that materials are on hand to repair any damage to our electricity delivery systems.”

The New York State Police also issued a winter travel advisory, shortly after 6 p.m. Thursday, "advising motorists in the Hudson Valley region to refrain from all unnecessary travel on Friday."

"Historically, snow storms of this predicted magnitude have resulted in road closures and motorists becoming stranded on the highways," officials said. "It is anticipated that travel conditions will deteriorate rapidly beginning in the late morning and continuing into the evening hours. Sporadic closures of sections of I-84, the Taconic State Parkway and I-684 throughout the day are anticipated. All vehicular traffic, particularly commercial motor vehicles, are advised to avoid these roadways. All vehicles abandoned on the roadway will be subject to immediate impoundment."

Information for commuters is available here.

With the impending storm a number of cancellations have already been made. 

Ashley Tarr (Editor) February 08, 2013 at 02:23 AM
And if you were planning to go to EagleFest, it's been moved to Sunday.
Ashley Tarr (Editor) February 08, 2013 at 07:42 PM
And as a sidenote, Happy Birthday to Leah Duddie! She's the one in the photo at Kobacker's.

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