It had not started snowing in New York City on Thursday afternoon, but Mayor Bill de Blasio (on his second day on the job) was already cautioning New Yorkers to stay in Thursday night.
“Please stay home tonight, and stay off the roads,” de Blasio said at a press conference following the swearing-in of police commissioner Bill Bratton on Thursday afternoon.
As of 3:56 p.m. Wednesday afternoon, a blizzard watch was in effect and the National Weather Service was anticipating six to ten inches of snow, wind gusts up to 45 miles per hour, and wind chill possibly dipping as low as -5 degrees starting Thursday afternoon, and continuing through Friday morning. The worst of the storm is expected to roll into town around 9 p.m.
Governor Cuomo also advised New Yorkers to stay off the roads.
— Andrew Cuomo (@NYGovCuomo) January 2, 2014
The governor told reporters Thursday morning he may close the Long Island Expressway and other state parkways if the storm warrants it.
The Department of Transportation announced Thursday that alternate side parking will be suspended citywide for snow removal on Friday, but the decision about whether to keep schools open Friday would not be made until early that morning.
Here’s how your Friday commute could be impacted:
If there is snowfall of five inches or more, the MTA warns express trains may run local on the A, E, D, F, N, Q, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 lines; service on the B may end early, and service on the 7 may be suspended altogether.
If there is more than six inches of snowfall, expect route cancellations, delays and skipped stops. If there is 10 inches of snowfall, bus service could be suspended altogether.
In the event of three to five inches of snow, customers will be notified by phone of any service changes. If there are six inches or more could mean service cancellations.
LIRR service may be reduced or suspended if 10 to 13 inches accumulate. Express service may be suspended on Staten Island Railway in the event of 6 inches or more; in the event of ten or more inches, and service may be suspended entirely. Metro-North is more vague, saying, “service may be temporarily reduced or suspended” if “significant snowfall accumulation/blizzard conditions” occur.
Check the MTA’s website for more information.