City Largely Unscathed by Blizzard of 2015

The National Guard was deployed in the Merrimack Valley, but no incidents were reported. Here Massachusetts State Police Trooper Gary Comeau with National Guard Sergeant Antone, SPC Nepal, SPC Dunne and PFC Millin.

In Haverhill, from a public safety perspective, coping with the blizzard of 2015 was “as good as expected,” according to Haverhill Deputy Police Chief Donald Thompson.

Thompson told WHAV “nothing unexpected” occurred in the Monday evening and overnight hours as there were no major incidents or power outages, however snow removal crews have experienced a “tough time keeping up” with the wind blown snow accumulations.

While roads were very quiet with a travel ban in effect for non-essential personnel, Haverhill police responded to only “a couple of stranded motorists,” and some 13 vehicles, in violation of the parking ban under the city’s snow emergency, had to be towed.

Thompson said he toured the city early Tuesday morning and found residents complied with the snow emergency.

Haverhill Police reported no arrests Monday, or since the start of the major snow storm. Meanwhile, Massachusetts State Police reported, “heavy snow and snow covered roads.” State police and and the National Guard, however, assisted local authorities  evacuate homes on Elm Street in Ipswich due to flooding.

Monday evening, Mayor James J. Fiorentini declared an “extreme snow emergency” in the city which is in effect until 6 p.m., Wednesday. No on-street parking is allowed during the emergency. There are municipal lots available for parking including the Haverhill Public Library, all School parking lots, Somebody Cares New England, located at 358 Washington Street, All Saints Church, 120 Bellevue Ave. and City Hall. The MVRTA Garage and the Herbert H. Goecke Memorial Parking Deck, Merrimack Street, are also available.

In a “Minute With The Mayor” address, Fiorentini asked inner city residents to share a driveway with a neighbor.

“I used to live in the Mount Washington area. And I know this is a serious problem for many of our citizens who do not have driveways or other off-street parking. I’m asking our residents to reach out to a neighbor and to share your driveway with a neighbor so that they’ll have a place to park and our plows can get through and keep your streets clear when the storm is over,” Fiorentini said.

Haverhill Public schools are closed both days. Trash and recycling pickup scheduled for Tuesday and Wednesday has been rescheduled to Thursday and Friday. Thursday and Friday’s scheduled pickup are both moved to Saturday.

The Haverhill Citizens Center, 10 Welcome Street, is being made available as an emergency shelter. Those seeking shelter are asked to contact Haverhill Police at (978) 373-1212.

A blizzard warning remains in effect until 1 a.m., Wednesday, according to Wave Weather meteorologist Steve Lavoie.

The latest storm details are presented on Wave Weather every 30 minutes on WHAV.