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First Snowstorm of 2014 Passes Through West Orange

Mayor commends the township's workers during the storm, school official says snow day 'will not impact' school calendar.

Plows canvass down Eagle Rock Avenue cleaning roads Friday morning. Photos by Melinda Stevens
Plows canvass down Eagle Rock Avenue cleaning roads Friday morning. Photos by Melinda Stevens
The first snowstorm of the year has come and passed and residents throughout North Jersey were shoveling and digging snow in low temperatures Friday.

The region was hit with up to 8 inches of snow between Thursday evening and Friday morning. Temperatures will remain in the single digits throughout the weekend.

Gov. Chris Christie declared New Jersey in a state of emergency Thursday and encouraged everyone to stay off the roads in anticipation of the storm.

Mayor Robert Parisi praised township worker’s for their hard work in securing the streets and clearing them as quickly as possible after the storm.

“I think they did great,” Parisi said. “It was a tough storm. Besides that it was a fair amount of accumulation, the wind and time makes final clean up a little more tricky.”

Parisi added that everything is back to normal, despite the snow accumulation.

“Everyone did great and the streets are open and cleared,” Parisi said. “Everything seems to be moving normally.”

No major car accidents occurred that he knew of, according to Parisi, but he did state certain neighborhoods in town had power outages.

“My neighborhood lost power, but it was restored by about 7:30 a.m.,” Parisi said. “I also know there were a few other spots with power outages and as far as I know they have all been restored and there are no current outages.”

Parisi credited the power company for working hard during the storm.

“To their credit, they were out in the storm working to fix the outages, not waiting until it was over,” Parisi said.

The West Orange School District was closed Friday due to the snowstorm. The district stated the closing was due to the impending winter storm.

Interim Superintendent James O’Neill stated the snow day on Friday wouldn’t affect the rest of the school’s calendar.

“Today's closing will have no impact on the rest of the school year,” O’Neill said through email correspondence with Patch. “We have three additional days built into the calendar, so if we lose two more days we will still be fine.”

O’Neill added that if the district loses a fourth day, then the district will have to “revise the calendar to meet the 180 day requirement. 

Parisi stated the police department; fire department and other emergency workers are “mobile” and ready to keep the township safe if anything else were to occur.

“We have everyone out and obviously the department of public works has been out there since the snow began yesterday,” Parisi said. “We will remain active and the workers will be out salting to prepare for colder temperatures this weekend and doing whatever we have to do to keep everyone safe.

NJ Transit will be cross-honoring tickets through Friday. Customers can use their ticket or pass on an alternate travel mode — rail, light rail or bus — including private bus carriers, according to their website.

If you have any snow photos to share, such as your child's huge snow man or an unbelievable snow sighting, we want to see them! Email West Orange editor Melinda Stevens at melinda.stevens@patch.com and we will get your pictures up!

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