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The first half of the second major snowstorm of the season slowed the evening commute, prompted early school dismissals and wasn't expected to taper off until this morning.
Questions still lingered late Tuesday about how many schools planned to open late or stay closed today. The Groton and New London public school systems were among the first locally to announce online that they would be staying closed.
Almost immediately after the snow started falling early Tuesday afternoon, state and local police and fire crews had their hands full with numerous reports of fender benders and spinouts. Ledyard emergency personnel on Tuesday evening were called for reports of a car that had rolled over into a brook in the area of Deer Hill.
Earlier in the day, police and firefighters walked along the railroad tracks near Poquetanuck Cove to recover the body of an unidentified man found in the Thames River in Ledyard. It was unclear how long the body had been in the water.
Gov. Dannel P. Malloy urged residents to take it slowly on the roads and activated the state's Emergency Operations Center "to monitor conditions across the state and quickly coordinate any assistance that may be necessary."
He also ordered a staggered release of nonessential first-shift state employees between 3 and 3:30 p.m. Tuesday.
While there was plenty of snow drifting about by Tuesday evening, the heaviest of the snow was forecast to fall overnight, dropping between 8 and 12 inches or more in parts of New London County.
Flurries and some snow showers were expected to linger until midmorning before a partial clearing. The snow is accompanied by temperatures dropping into the teens by daybreak, according to Gary Lessor, a meteorologist with the Western Connecticut State University Weather Center.
"It will be very windy and very cold," with the high temperatures today in the mid- to upper teens on the shore and in the lower teens inland. Wind chills will be around zero the entire day.
The bad news for those people who don't enjoy frigid temperatures is that there is no real warming trend in sight over the next several weeks, Lessor said. As a result of a colder-than-average winter thus far, Lessor said consumers should plan for higher heating fuel costs this year.
Amtrak announced Tuesday that it will operate a modified schedule on the Northeast Corridor between Boston and Washington, the Keystone Service between New York and Harrisburg, Pa., and the Empire Line between New York City and Albany today.
Acela Express and Northeast Regional service will operate between Boston and Washington, though passengers should expect reduced frequencies.
Other corridor services, including the Amtrak Downeaster between Brunswick, Maine, and Boston, and the Springfield Shuttle between New Haven and Springfield, Mass., are expected to operate on a normal schedule.
East Lyme: There is a parking ban in effect on all streets and highways through noon today. Overnight parking in the town parking lots was permitted.
City of Groton: Parking is prohibited on the following streets through 7 a.m. Thursday: Thames Street, from Broad Street to School Street; Slocomb Terrace; Beckwith Place; Latham Street (odd side only); and Fort Street (odd side only). Parking in legal parking spaces on unaffected streets is allowed. The city has also made parking available at Groton Heights School, the municipal parking lot at 2 Latham St., and at Washington Park.
Montville: On-street parking is banned on all roads until noon today.
New London: Winter parking regulations for non-downtown streets and a downtown parking ban went into effect at 4 p.m. Tuesday. Free parking is available for city residents at the Water Street Parking Garage and at the downtown municipal lots. Per winter parking regulations, cars must be parked on the odd side of the street.
Norwich: Parking on the odd side of all city streets is prohibited until the roads are cleared. No parking is allowed on either side of narrow city streets, including Old Cemetery Lane, North Cliff Street, Shetucket Avenue, Terrace Avenue, Fourth Street from Prospect Street to Gilmour Street, Fifth Street from Prospect Street to Page Street, Lake Street, Pond Street, Freeman Avenue, Boswell Avenue from Lake Street to Arnold Street, the Laurel Hill section of Sunnyside Avenue, Fairmont Street from No. 16 to School Street, Carter Avenue, Fountain Street from No. 16 to School Street, Summer Street, Center Street and Quarry Street.
Old Lyme: A parking ban on Lyme Street and Ferry Road will remain in effect until 6 a.m. today.
Stonington: Parking is prohibited on all town roads until all roads are cleared this morning.
Stonington borough: Parking is not allowed on Water Street during the storm. Residents today are asked to park on the even sides of Main and Elm streets and on the odd sides Thursday so the highway crew can clear the streets.
Waterford: A parking ban will remain in effect until all roads have been cleared by the Public Works Department. During the ban, no vehicles may be parked on the side of the road.