Gov. Dannel P. Malloy ordered all nonessential state employees on the first and second shifts to stay home Thursday as Connecticut was expected to be hit with bands of snow, sleet and possibly freezing rain from a strengthening winter storm until Friday morning.
“As conditions are predicted to intensify throughout the day, we are ordering all first and second shift, nonessential state employees to stay home today,” Malloy said. “I don’t like the term nonessential because I think everyone does important work, but with poor road conditions I don’t want to put anyone in harm’s way. With heavy snow falling across the state and forecast to continue throughout the day, I am asking residents to avoid unnecessary travel.”
At his 8:30 a.m. briefing at the State Armory in Hartford, Malloy said a heavy band of snow capable of dropping 2 to 4 inches an hour was approaching from the south, promising that white-out conditions would move across Connecticut during the day.
The governor said he was pleased to see empty highways on video screens in the armory’s Emergency Operations Center.
“People are staying home,” he said.
The governor’s senior staff said the nonessential list covered most state employees not engaged in snow clearance, public safety, corrections and patient care.
Malloy the least predictable aspect of the storm was icing. If ice accumulations reach a half-inch, widespread power outages can be expected.
A winter storm warning from the National Weather Service is in effect for Connecticut until 7 a.m. Friday, snow accumulations of eight to 12 inches, gusty winds and icing.