Residents woke this morning to far less snow than originally forecasted for Tuesday, January 27. With just half a foot of powdery snowfall clinging to windowsills and mounded on rooftops across town, precipitation fell until roughly noon on Tuesday. The prior night's blizzard conditions were downgraded to a winter storm advisory by morning, and the travel ban, which Governor Dannel P. Malloy had ordered for all traffic Monday as of 9 pm, was lifted at 8:30 am.
Planning and Zoning Commission (P&Z) members are reviewing an industrial firm’s modified proposal for new zoning regulations, which would potentially allow it to handle and process scarp tires at an industrial building on High Bridge Road. P&Z held a public hearing on January 15 on MAAK Environmental Corporation’s regulatory proposal for new zoning rules, which would allow solid waste facilities for the storage and recycling of scrap tires in a M-1 (Industrial) zone, such as the zone that exists at an industrial building at 40 High Bridge Road. The current version of tire handling proposal under review by the P&Z would limit activity to shipping whole scrap tires to a site, shredding them there, baling the shredded rubber, and then shipping it out for further processing elsewhere. The proposal would not involve extracting byproducts from those tires, as had been earlier proposed by MAAK. P&Z member Jim Swift said the proposed operation, which would handle 1,000 tires daily, might eventually grow into an operation that is much larger.
Governor Dannel P. Malloy made his first public statements concerning a blizzard that is approaching Connecticut during a 15-minute press conference Monday morning from the state’s Emergency Operations Center in Hartford. All residents across Connecticut should be prepared for heavy snow, accompanied by high winds and coastal flooding all possible, he said. The storm “has to potential to be the largest winter storm we’ve seen since 2013, and that was the February one.” The National Weather Service is predicting up to 35 inches of snow to arrive in Newtown between Monday night and Tuesday night. Governor Malloy announced a travel ban for all Connecticut roads, to go into effect Monday at 9 pm, as part of his press conference.
With New England bracing for a blizzard, due to arrive by tonight, closing and cancellation notices are bound to be part of the process of riding out the storm. Readers, groups and individuals with events that will be affected due to the weather are encouraged to contact Bee Associate Editor Shannon Hicks with this information, which will be posted on The Bee’s website, Facebook page and Twitter feed.
The Capener family of Sandy Hook took advantage of Saturday’s snow to do what they do very well: the family built a large snow sculpture in their yard. Joined by some friends, a large snow bust of Bart Simpson now has a place of prominence in the family’s yard. Sculptors on Sunday included Ethan Capener, Miles Capener, Lily Capener, Eric Gray, Richard Guman, Julian Crane, and Vinny Wilson
First Selectman Pat Llodra and Newtown’s Emergency Management Team are asking that every resident make appropriate preparations to ensure personal safety and readiness for what might be a major disruption in services. Following a meeting this morning between Mrs Llodra, Director of Health Donna Culbert, Fire Marshal Bill Halstead, Director of Communications Maureen Will, and Deputy Land Use Director Rob Sibley, the team is announcing that Newtown’s emergency services are prepared and ready; and Public Works, Parks & Recreation and Newtown Police Department are fully equipped with materials and supplies are staffed for full response. Snow has already begun falling in Newtown. While it had been moving at a moderate rate during the mid to late morning hours, there is currently a lull in action. The Newtown Emergency Response Team is continuing to monitor the storm, however. The team, which participated at 9:15 this morning with Governor Dannel P. Malloy in a conference call among other towns and municipalities, has activated the town’s Emergency Operations Center at a “monitoring level” at this time.
Newtown Public Works crews spent the majority of Saturday working to clear the town’s roads of a quick snowstorm that dropped approximately 6-8 inches of snow and a small amount of freezing rain on Newtown before the storm cleared by late morning. Now it looks like the same employees who spent up to 15 hours working on January 24 need to get ready for a second storm, and this one may be very serious. The National Weather Service this afternoon has upgraded a Winter Storm Watch that had included most of Fairfield County to a Blizzard Warning. Snow is expected to arrive by Monday afternoon and continue well into Tuesday. Portions of the state may be buried by more than two feet of snow, the NWS is reporting. Newtown and the area covered by this Blizzard Warning may receive up to 30 inches of snow.