First Snow Of 2012 Blankets Tri-State Area


snowNew York – The first snowstorm to hit the Tri-state area this year has come and gone, leaving behind several inches of snow in many parts of the region. It’s an opportunity to make some money for those with private snow plows, and for kids to have fun.

Eileen Lehpamer spoke with several shoveling snow up in Yonkers.

“Actually it’s a nice, light snow fall. It’s a nice one to break in with,” resident Steve said.

The first flakes started falling in New York City about 2:30 a.m. By around noon, nearly three inches had fallen on the Upper West Side, around two inches in the Bronx and about an inch and a half in Central Park.

Forecasters say four to five inches of snow topped by light coating of sleet was expected in the lower boroughs of the city and along the South Shore of western Long Island. Some spots on Long Island may have up to six inches.

AccuWeather says as temperatures rise throughout the day, accumulating snow will begin to melt. But as temperatures fall below freezing later tonight, the moisture will re-freeze creating a potential for black ice.

The city’s Sanitation Department has 1,500 snow plows and 1,300 workers on the job and another 700 on call.

At a news conference this morning, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said the city’s plows are each equipped with global positioning systems, allowing supervisors to see their approximate location on maps that are updated every 30 seconds.

Bloomberg said having the snow fall on a weekend makes clean up a little easier.

“Because it’s the weekend, it has less effect on commerce and traffic, fewer cars on the street so the plows and the salt spreaders have fewer impediments,” he said.

Alternate side of the street parking regulations have been suspended.

Forecasters said southern Connecticut could have more snow than the northern part of the state, perhaps as much as six inches.

Northern New Jersey was one of the areas expected to feel the brunt of the storm with four to six inches on the ground. Other parts of the state will see an inch or two but sleet and ice could also make it a dangerous day on the roads in the Garden State.

Road crews in the city and the suburbs are hard at work spreading sand and salt to keep road travel safe.

“Everybody’s got a route. You just stay on your same route and keep pushing. Keep pushing till the sun comes up and when it’s done,” said snow plow driver Ray Korver.

But slick road conditions have caused some accidents. One wreck on Victory Boulevard on Staten Island left a teenage girl with severe head trauma while police say a 26-year-old man was struck and killed by a car on Third Avenue at 111th Street in Manhattan. The driver remained on the scene.

A truck hit an overpass in New Jersey on I-78 around 5 a.m. near Hillside, spilling a load of salt all over the road. No word on exactly what caused the crash or if anyone was hurt.

The snowstorm is also having an impact on airports, creating problems for air travelers heading into New York.

Newark Liberty, JFK and LaGuardia reported canceled and delayed inbound flights from airports farther west that were hit earlier by the snowstorm.

{WCBS 880 AM/ Newscenter}