Governor Announces Early Dismissal for State Employees
in Anticipation of Evening Commute
WEST TRENTON – Governor Phil Murphy and Colonel Patrick J. Callahan, Superintendent of the New Jersey State Police and Director of the New Jersey Office of Emergency Management, have authorized an early dismissal for all state offices due to today’s winter weather.
The Governor has initiated a staggered closing for state offices beginning at 1:30 PM this afternoon. The early dismissal does not include essential employees, who shall remain until the normal close of business. Private companies and business should dismiss their employees at their own discretion. No state of emergency has been declared at this point.
“Winter weather and a dramatic drop in temperatures are expected today and into this evening and throughout the night,” said Governor Murphy. “When you are on the roads, please use extreme caution and allow road crews plenty of room to keep the roads clear. Once you get home, the best thing to do is to stay in. Our overarching goal is for everyone to get home safe.”
Drivers are reminded to drive with caution, follow the rules of the road, stay alert and anticipate the inclement weather impacting their afternoon and evening commute. Unnecessary travel is not recommended. “With temperatures falling this afternoon and tonight, our biggest concern is for icy roads,” NJDOT Commissioner Diane Gutierrez-Scaccetti said. “Our crews will be working all afternoon and through the night to keep roads clear and safe. If you have to be on the roads, give plows and spreaders room to do their job, avoid hilly areas, and use caution as road conditions can change quickly.”
The New Jersey Office of Emergency Management in coordination with the New Jersey Department of Transportation and the Board of Public Utilities as well as various state agencies will continue to monitor the storm from the State Emergency Operations Center until the event concludes.
"Troopers are ready to assist residents and commuters throughout the state, both on and off of the highways, for the duration of the storm should they be needed," said Colonel Patrick Callahan of the New Jersey State Police. "We cannot do it without you. Please use caution when traveling and prepare an emergency kit for use at home and for your vehicle.”
“The utilities are making all necessary preparations and the BPU remains in close contact with them as we monitor this storm,” said Board of Public Utilities President Joseph L. Fiordaliso. “ We are on high alert for ice and high wind and I urge residents to report any power outages to their utility. A special note of caution: if you see a downed power line, do not touch or attempt to move it – call your local utility for assistance.”
Winter Weather Update
Rain and snow are forecast statewide Tuesday. A Winter Weather Advisory is in effect until midnight for Sussex, Warren, Morris, and Hunterdon Counties. A Winter Weather Advisory is in effect until 6 AM Wednesday for western Bergen and western Passaic Counties. A Winter Weather Advisory is in effect from 4 PM Tuesday through midnight for Somerset and Mercer Counties.
Impacts to New Jersey
Snowfall rates may be heavy at times this evening in the locations under Winter Weather Advisories. Snow mixing with rain Tuesday evening may make roads slippery during the evening commute north and west of I-95. Locations south and east of the I-95 corridor may see mostly rain until Tuesday evening. Monitor local forecasts for updated rain and snow information.
Stay Tuned To Your Local Weather
Make checking the forecast part of your regular routine so you'll know what to expect. Snow totals will vary depending on where you live in the state. For those living in Central and Southern New Jersey visit US National Weather Service Philadelphia/Mount Holly http://www.weather.gov/phi/
. For those living in Northern New Jersey and the New York Metro area visit US National Weather Service New York NY http://www.weather.gov/okx/
Prepare for Cold Weather
The way to avoid frostbite and hypothermia is to plan for extreme cold before it arrives. Don't get caught unprepared.
• If possible, adjust your schedule to avoid being outside during the coldest part of the day, typically the early morning. Try to find a warm spot for your children while waiting for the school bus outside.
• If you have pets or farm animals, make sure they have plenty of food and water, and are not overly exposed to extreme cold. If you’re cold, they’re cold. Bring them inside! For more info visitanimalemergency.nj.gov.
Take precautions to ensure your water pipes do not freeze. Know the temperature thresholds of your plants and crops.
• Make sure your car or vehicle has at least a half a tank of gas during extreme cold situations so that you can stay warm if you become stranded. Be sure to have an emergency kit for your vehicle.
• Check 511nj.org
for traffic updates during your morning and evening commute.
• Dress for the outdoors: Dress for cold weather, even if you think you won’t be outside very long.
The New Jersey Office of Emergency Management does not make decisions regarding school delayed openings, dismissals, or closures due to weather. Please contact your local school district or stay tuned to your local news for updates regarding your school district.