After Winter Storm Derby dropped heavy snow, sleet and freezing rain across Connecticut, people were advised to stay off state highways and secondary roads as crews try to clear and widen the streets.
A winter storm warning expired for all of Northern Connecticut around 7:30 p.m. while a Winter Weather Advisory remains in effect for the southern portion of the state until Thursday at 10 a.m.
Some locations in Connecticut received 5 inches of snow in just a matter of two hours, according to WFSB Chief Meteorologist Bruce DePrest. Snowfall totals range from 6 to 12 inches across much of the state, DePrest added.
Residents will continue to see mixed precipitation Wednesday evening as well as additional minor accumulations lasting until around midnight.
As the temperature starts to drop, more black ice will start to appear on the roads Wednesday night, which make traveling on Connecticut roads difficult.
Temperatures will drop through the 20s this evening then into the teens overnight, DePrest said. Thursday is expected to be much colder than Wednesday and it could lead to re-freezing as well as icing during the morning commute, DePrest added.
More than 800 Connecticut Department of Transportation snow plows and private contractors cleared the roads Wednesday morning. As of 5 p.m., there were 632 DOT trucks out "to widen the roads tonight (Wednesday) and make progress secondary roads."
"When it gets down to the teens, this (snow) will be very hard to move," Malloy said.
Connecticut State Police said they responded to more than 1,200 calls including hundreds of crashes with at least 12 having serious injuries.
"The roads are OK," said Dave Wesolowski, who is a sub-contractor hired to clear sidewalks at a local Dunkin Donuts. "It's the people who shouldn't be out driving around, because they're out causing problems and are in the way."
Wesolowski said even though all the employees could not make it to work, the Dunkin Donuts was busy.
"(It's) been going since 6 o'clock non-stop with no end in sight," Wesolowski said.
Gov. Dannel Malloy partially activated the state's Emergency Operations Center at midnight on Wednesday to monitor the storm's progress and to better coordinate a rapid response to any problems.
Malloy ordered non-essential state employees to stay home. State employees are being advised to check with their supervisors for updates.
"Considering the precarious driving conditions across the state, I want to urge all residents to be safe, avoid travel and stay home until the roads have been cleared," said Malloy in a statement Wednesday afternoon.
Malloy also urged employers in the state to let their employees stay home during the storm.
Now that the snow was winding down, people were advised to be careful when clearing snow and to not stick their hands inside snow blowers.
The snow left by Winter Storm Derby was heavy, and people are being advised to take their time shoveling.
People should also clear a three-foot radius around fire hydrants near their home "to avoid potential problems."
Malloy said DOT was not having any problems with a shortage of salt. There is more on the way in the coming days. Only one town asked for a salt loan, so far. State is not the supplier for these municipalities, but Malloy said they wanted to help.
The third storm system could impact the state starting Sunday afternoon. However, DePrest said it "looks like a coastal storm will form, but it now looks like we'll get a light to moderate snowfall, instead of a real blockbuster."
"We will certainly keep you updated on the models trends over the next several days," DePrest said.
Copyright 2014 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
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