N.J. State Police Gear Up For Winter Storm

state policeThe State Police, responsible for patrolling New Jersey’s highways, is gearing up for a winter storm expected to start late this afternoon.¬†Lieutenant Colonel Jerome Hatfield said they’re preparing for as much as 20 inches in South Jersey and as few as four inches in Sussex County at the state’s northern tip. Top commanders, speaking during a staff meeting this morning at State Police headquarters, said they’re putting dozens more troopers on the road and quickly moving abandoned vehicles off highways to clear the¬†way for plow trucks.

Major Chris O’Shea, who commands the State Police unit based in Totowa, said the snow doesn’t start to strain resources until it surpasses eight inches. But he’s still concerned about rush hour traffic tonight, when motorists may try to beat the storm by speeding home even as snow starts to fall.

“The first couple flakes of snow makes the road slicker than the next three inches,” he said.

State Police Supt. Rick Fuentes said it’s best if the heaviest snow falls overnight, after people arrive home from work and before they start their day Saturday .

“Hopefully most people will wake up, pull the covers over their heads and decide not to go out on the road,” he said. “The less cars we have out on the road, the less accidents.” Star Ledger

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