First Snow of Season will affect Commutes
Chief Paul Toussaint and the Rochester Police Department are warning residents about the potential impact of the region’s first snowstorm of the season.
The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Warning for the area from 7 p.m. Thursday through 1 p.m. Friday. Rochester can expect to receive 5-8 inches of snow, changing to ice, sleet and then rain Friday morning. There is a significant chance for icing on the roadways.
The strongest wind gusts are expected Friday morning after sunrise. Travel overnight may be particularly difficult with snow peaking at 1-2 inches per hour.
The Thursday evening commute is expected to be impacted most significantly, but there will likely be some impact on the Friday morning commute.
While this storm is not expected to be large in size and scope, especially by New England standards, Chief Toussaint urges residents to familiarize themselves with these general winter weather safety tips:
BEFORE A STORM
- It is always a good idea to have extra batteries in the house. Residents should always be prepared for power outages and stock up on batteries for flashlights or battery powered lanterns. If using candles, there should be a 3 foot ring of safety and be sure to keep them away from anything flammable or combustible.
- Keep cell phones, laptops and tablets charged as much as possible. Consider an external battery for your devices.
- Neighbors should talk with one another and set up plans to assist those who may be at risk and/or in need of help.
DURING A STORM
- Stay off the roads during periods of snow and sleet. If there is a plowable amount of snow, give plow and sand/salt trucks the space they need to operate.
- If power goes out during the storm, contact Eversource at 800-592-2000 to report an outage.
- To report a gas leak, call 911.
- If you have an emergency, call 911.
AFTER A STORM
- Do not go near or drive over any downed power lines.
- Clear snow from any gas vents attached to your home
- If snow ever rises above your vehicle’s tailpipe or is plowed to the point where it blocks the tailpipe NEVER start your vehicle before clearing the exhaust
- Assist the fire department by shoveling out any hydrants near your home.
- During a power outage, never run generators indoors or in garages. Aim exhaust away from the home, and do not run generators near HVAC intake pipes
- Do not use space heaters while sleeping
- Never use your oven as a heat source