The New York City Emergency Management Department has issued a travel advisory from Feb. 4-5, following the announcement of a Winter Weather Advisory by the National Weather Service (NWS) for NYC that started at 8 a.m. on Friday.
“We are still in the midst of the winter season,” said NYC Emergency Management Acting Commissioner Christina Farrell. “We encourage all New Yorkers to use mass transit, allow for extra travel time, and exercise caution,” she warned.
According to the latest forecast, the metropolitan area can expect to see freezing rain and sleet, which will gradually subside in the evening, but be preceded by intermittent periods of moderate rain in the afternoon that are predicted to continue overnight. Meteorologists estimate a total accumulation of 1.5 to 2.0 inches of rainfall by the end of the storm.
The NWS warns that areas with lingering water from last weekend’s winter storm may re-freeze by Friday afternoon or evening, which, combined with the freezing rain, will result in hazardous conditions on the road into the weekend.
“We are expecting fast-changing conditions on Friday, as temperatures drop rapidly,” said Commissioner of the New York City Department of Sanitation, Edward Grayson. “DSNY is ready to go, and asks all New Yorkers to stay off the roads and give space for our teams to spread salt and do the rest of their important work getting the city moving.”
DSNY is taking the necessary precautions to reduce potential dangers by dispatching salt spreaders to pretreat roadways before sighting of the first snowfall, with plans to deploy more than 2,000 plows when more than two inches of snow accumulates.
It is recommended that drivers move slowly and keep in mind that vehicles take longer to stop on snow than on dry pavement, and walkers should remain cautious and avoid slippery surfaces, particularly because some ice may not be visible.
If you choose to venture out this weekend, make sure to gear yourself with sturdy foot-ware that provides traction to reduce slipping, utilize handrails when taking the stairs, and keep fingertips, earlobes, and noses protected from the outside elements.
“New Yorkers should be aware of rapidly changing weather conditions over the next two days,” warned NYC Department of Transportation Commissioner Ydanis Rodriguez. “We will be working closely with our agency partners at DSNY and NYCEM throughout this weather event,” he said, but, “the safest choice on the roads during these potentially dangerous conditions will be to avoid driving altogether. If you need to travel, please use mass transit.”