Snow causes few problems in New Jersey

January 12, 2011 11:10:34 AM PST
A snow-weary New Jersey woke up Wednesday to up to a foot of fresh snow on the ground, schools closed, office openings delayed and flights canceled.

But unlike the monstrosity of a winter storm mess just over two weeks earlier, this one wasn't such a big deal.

The fluffy snow made for easy shoveling, for one thing.

"It's a lot easier now, this is nothing," said Angelica Cortinas, who was clearing snow in front of her home in Newark's Ironbound neighborhood Wednesday. "I'll take this every day. I won't move to Minnesota though. I'll keep New Jersey."

Major roads also were cleared quickly.

"Being that it was overnight, they could catch up to it pretty well. There's nothing major we're dealing with at this point," said State Police Sgt. Julian Castellanos.

New Jersey Turnpike Authority spokesman Joe Orlando said the Turnpike and the Garden State Parkway were both in good shape, in part because travelers heeded warnings and stayed off the roads overnight, giving plows a clearer path.

By midday, the Parkway was cleared down to the blacktop in most areas. The Turnpike still had some speed limit as plows finished clearing outer lanes and shoulders, but much of the road was back to normal.

Scattered accidents were reported, including a jackknifed tractor-trailer on Route 287 in Edison, and a car that spun out on an exit ramp of Route 80 west in Parsippany.

Totals ranged from just an inch and a half in Atlantic City to just over a foot in Bergen County's East Rutherford.

For a swath of the state stretching from the Philadelphia suburbs to near New York City, forecasts that called for about 6 to 12 inches of snow were spot-on.

Newark Liberty Airport reported 8 inches of snow, enough to cancel more than 500 flights. Many were scratched in advance. Flights that were departing were leaving the ground only about 15 minutes behind schedule.

Masal Nachmia, 60, and her husband, Real Gaudreau, were stranded overnight at Newark Liberty Airport as they traveled back home to Ottawa, Canada, from a trip to China.

They couple was amused that so many flights, including theirs, were canceled.

"I don't understand," she said. "We are Canadian, we are used to snow, and there is no snow outside."

State offices delayed openings by two hours - and many local governments also shortened their schedules. Men's and women's basketball games scheduled for Wednesday night between The College of New Jersey and Richard Stockton College were postponed because of the snow.

New Jersey Transit reported trains were running on schedule, but bus service had some delays.

Southern New Jersey's PATCO train line was on a snow schedule Wednesday morning, but planned a regular weekday schedule for the afternoon.

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