No matter what you call it – or as one of my friends answered: "I personally have been calling it something entirely different and not appropriate for Facebook!" – the blizzard is here. Here, the snow is falling, the plows are out, the kids are already going a bit stir-crazy.
In Hartford, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy intends to declare a state of emergency due to the blizzard that is expected to wallop Connecticut Friday through Saturday, and is asking residents to limit non-essential travel during the storm.
The governor's office has also indicated that Malloy is considering closing roads during the storm as early as noon Friday.
"People need to take this storm seriously," Malloy said in a statement. "If current predictions are accurate, we will need people to stay off the roads so that emergency personnel and utility crews can get to the places they need to get to, and to make sure that our plows can keep critical roadways clear. Please stay home once the weather gets bad except in the case of real emergency."
But this is only the beginning with snow forecasted throughout the day and into Saturday. The Town of Branford has declared a state of emergency, opening the Emergecny Operations Center.
The Town of Branford has also sent home all non-essential town employees at noon and the Branford Fire Department reports via Facebook that its volunteer stations will be manned as of 2 p.m.
In the meantime, enjoy the snow, stay safe and warm and take a minute to share some photos of the view from your window by clicking 'Upload Photos and Video' above or below the photo gallery.
Feb. 8, 2013, 12 p.m. update
Due to the current weather conditions, the town has declared a State of Emergency. We are encouraging all residents to stay indoors through Saturday afternoon. This is a very serious storm. We are requesting that you do not travel unless it is an absolute emergency.
We are expecting extremely heavy snowfalls of over 2ft., severe winds with gusts of up to 70 mph and moderate coastal flooding of up to 4 ft. above normal high tides. It is predicted that snowfall rates may be up to 5” per hour with zero visibility.
We are requesting all residents voluntarily avoid parking vehicles in the roadway. If you must park in the roadway parking is allowed only on the odd side of the street. Violators could face up to a $90 fine and have their vehicle towed at their expense.
The Emergency Operations Center is now open and all town departments including libraries have closed.
Additionally, the Branford Fire Department warns to avoid carbon monoxide (CO) backing up into buildings. Please take the time to clear snow from the area where furnaces, hot water heaters, clothes dryers and other appliances vent outside the building. Should your Carbon Monoxide (CO) alarm activate please evacuate the building and call 911.
If you lose power, please take the usual precautions when using generators. Do not use any outdoor heating or cooking devices indoors. Never leave candles unattended and make sure that they are extinguished before going to bed.
Shelter in place – If needed, our shelters will open Saturday afternoon. If sheltering is required due to extended power outages the town will activate an emergency shelter at the Branford Community House located at 46 Church Street. Contact 203-315-3909 for pre-recorded information and to determine if the shelter is open.
The town’s Transfer Station located at 747 East Main Street will be closed on Saturday. Please be assured that all of the town departments are fully prepared in anticipation of this storm.
Storm Prep Tips from the BFD
The Branford Fire Department posted the following storm preparation tips on its Facebook page:
- Clear the hydrant in front of your home if possible
- Keep all vents around your home clear of snow, Carbon Monoxide gases can back up through these vents if they are obstructed
- Be sure you have fuel for your generators
- Check the batteries in your smoke and CO Detector
- Be sure elderly and/or disabled family have a supply of medications and prescriptions
- Stay off the roads if at all possible, this will be a difficult storm for the plows to keep up with.
The Fire Department will have extra staff on duty and our Volunteer Stations will be manned when appropriate.
2-1-1 Storm Preparation Resources
- 2-1-1 - Winter Storm Disaster Information & Resources
- 2-1-1 eLibrary - Winter Storms and Blizzards
- Connecticut Division of Emergency Management and Homeland Security
- National Weather Service
More on the Blizzard
- Connecticut Travel Ban in Effect as of 4PM
- Winter Storm Safety for Pets
- Why Do Snowstorms Have Names Now?
- Thursday Blizzard Updates: Branford Schools Closed
- Patch's Poll: Are You Prepared for the Blizzard?
- Blizzard Watch Issued for Branford