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Wilton gets about 24 inches, governor lifts travel ban

Update: Saturday, 3:45 p.m.— Gov. Malloy announced he will lift the travel ban at 4 p.m. Saturday. This applies to all roads, including limited access highways. Nevertheless, he is urging people to stay off the roads as much as possible. “Crews are out clearing roadways as we speak, but the fact is we are going to feel the impact of this storm for some time,” he said. “The longer we can keep traffic out of town centers and off of our highways, the more effective our recovery effort will be. “
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Update: Saturday, 2:13 p.m. — Metro-North resumed service on the New Haven line with a train that was scheduled to leave Grand Central at 1:37. A train from Stamford to GCT was scheduled to leave at 2:03.

Service on all branch lines remains suspended. Service is also suspended between Stamford and New Haven. The rail line reports parts of the line are buried under three feet of snow.

Saturday: 12:29 p.m. —The travel ban put in place throughout Connecticut after the impact of the blizzard’s heavy snowfall will likely remain in place throughout Saturday according to Gov. Dannel Malloy. Wilton officials have asked residents to respect the ban, saying road crews are still out plowing
According to a photo sent by Peter Spung, it looks like Wilton got just over two feet of snow. Unofficial figures from www.weather.gov that were released Saturday morning, show Greenwich received approximately 15.5 inches of snow, putting the town on the lower end of the spectrum of snowfall. Figures have Bridgeport being socked with 30 inches of snow with Shelton and Stratford also getting more than two feet. Other unofficial totals: New Canaan, 22 inches; Darien, 19 inches; Norwalk, 15.5 inches.

• Closings today:

Wilton Library

Wilton post office

Wilton Family Y (may open this afternoon)

Weir Farm
Mr. Malloy briefed the press Saturday morning and called the storm “record breaking” while noting that some parts of Connecticut received as much as 38 inches of snow on the ground. Because of that, the governor is continuing to urge people to stay in their homes and off the roads so plows and work crews can clear them and emergency vehicles can get through. Mr. Malloy said there have been problems with cars stuck on the roads, stranding drivers and the state does not want to see that added to. Mr. Malloy ordered the travel ban Saturday morning, saying it’s “essential that travel be limited to emergency personnel.” He added that this will help work in clearing the roads be accomplished much more rapidly and “get back to normal much more rapidly then if the roads are clogged with traffic.” He admitted that cleanup is expected to take days to complete.

Peter Spung sent this photo, too.

Peter Spung sent this photo, too.

“I would expect we would keep the travel ban in place through today,” Mr. Malloy said Saturday morning. “Again, the purpose is to encourage people to stay home and stay off the roads.”
“Right now our main priority is to clear roads,” Mr. Malloy said. “We have crews throughout the state working on state roads. Municipal governments are working on municipal roads as well.”
Mr. Malloy said he had been in contact with municipal leaders on Saturday morning and said state assistance would be available as soon as possible to individual communities. Work has to be completed on state roads first, though.
According to Mr. Malloy, the state police have responded to approximately 1,600 calls within the last 24 hours. There are 270 National Guard members on duty right now with “a few hundred more” coming into armories around the state. Mr. Malloy said they would be assigned tasks for both the state and municipal governments in Connecticut. At the press briefing he said he has signed an executive order allowing for non-essential calls for ambulances to be handled at the discretion of the local agencies, in this case Greenwich Emergency Medical Services and the 911 dispatch for the Greenwich Police Department.
“If it’s not an essential call and the area can’t be reached, then they can put that off,” Mr. Malloy said. “On the other hand, with respect to other calls they can use 4×4 vehicles to respond when they know ambulances can’t respond.”
Mr. Malloy said as of 11 a.m. on Saturday, there were 39,000 customers without power mostly in the Southeastern part of the state. Wilton has suffered no outages so far, which is a big change from the last major snowstorm to hit the area, the 2011 Halloween storm, where residents were left without service for days. Mr. Malloy urged residents to clear off areas where snow is blocking fire hydrants and for their individual homes make sure and clear off vents to avoid any potential backup of dangerous CO into the house.

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