New Jersey is being hit by a winter storm with its most impactful part expected to develop in most of the northern half of the state on Monday.
The northeastern part of the state could get hit the hardest, with more than 20 inches of snow for those densely populated areas, according to the New York office of the National Weather Service.
According to the New Jersey Herald, Governor Phil Murphy issued strong warnings for people on the roads during the storm Monday. “If you don’t need to be out, go back to your house immediately,” Murphy said in an afternoon press conference. “If you’re in your house, don’t leave your house.”
The storm is expected to dump large amounts of snow in the state and is not expected to stop until Tuesday evening, with Murphy saying it was “a big one.”
Murphy declared a state of emergency and state offices are closed for Monday. Murphy also announced all NJ TRANSIT buses, rail (except Atlantic City Rail Line), light rail, and Access Link service are temporarily suspended systemwide for the entire service day as well.
The snow storm has affected also all six COVID-19 vaccine mega-sites which will be closed on Monday. All appointments will be rescheduled within the week. The Vaccine Call Center will remain open to reschedule current appointments for first and second doses: 855-568-0545
Each of our vaccine mega-sites is CLOSED today due to the weather.
Anyone with an appointment at the Atlantic, Middlesex, or Morris site has received a call/email/text from the health care partner at that site to be rescheduled.
— Governor Phil Murphy (@GovMurphy) February 1, 2021
In addition, hundreds of flights at area airports canceled and many schools either closing or shifting to remote instruction, according to ABCNY.
All or parts of 18 counties are under a winter storm warning until Tuesday, with 2 to 5 inches already on the ground in most place as of early Monday, and a few places with 6 to 8 inches reported, the weather service said.
— So Brunswick PD (@SoBrunswickPD) February 1, 2021
Forecasters are still calling for strong winds gusts that could reach as high as 50 mph as well as moderate coastal flooding along the Jersey Shore. Drifting and blowing snow in northern and Central Jersey will make travel extremely difficult, forecasters say.
Preparing for the worst
Department of Transportation (NJDOT) Commissioner Diane Gutierrez-Scaccetti has issued a commercial vehicle travel restriction on multiple Interstate highways in New Jersey-based on the forecast for heavy snow and strong winds.
“Cooperate with us. Stay off the roads. Stay home. There’s no need to come out. If you need to come out, call us we’ll try to help you out if we can,” said the Essex County Sheriff. “We’re preparing for the worst, not even hopeful for the best anymore, preparing for the worst.”