Season’s First Snowfall Slows Morning Commute

(File photograph)

A slushy and slippery start to the morning commute in the greater Haverhill area as the first winter snowstorm of the season turns to sleet and, possibly, freezing rain.

While main city thoroughfares were treated overnight, many secondary and side streets remained snow-covered as of 6 a.m. A Haverhill Highway Department dispatcher told WHAV this morning plow trucks were being prepared overnight and will be out clearing streets.

“Leave early, drive slow and be careful,” the dispatcher said.

State highway crews were seen plowing in the Ward Hill Connector area by 6 a.m. This morning, MassDOT Highway division remains in snow and ice operations as pavement temperatures across the state remained below freezing, according to a spokesperson. The speed limit along the western half of the Mass Pike was reduced to 40 miles per hour.

“MassDOT encourages the use of public transportation at this time,” the spokesperson said.  “To avoid accidents, MassDOT urges drivers to slow down and use caution when driving in snowy or icy conditions.  MassDOT also reminds drivers to use common sense while driving near snow plows, and remember that the road in front of the plow is usually much worse than the roadway behind the plow.”

Wave Weather Meteorologist Steve Lavoie reports a winter weather advisory will be in effect locally until 7 p.m., Tuesday. A Wintry mix is expected to change to rain later as high temperature will approach 40 degerees.

A local weather spotter reported to the National Weather Service shortly after 6 a.m. a snowfall accumulation of 2.1 inches in Haverhill. Others report two inches of snow fell by 5 a.m. in southern Rockingham County.

The latest storm update from Wave Weather can be heard every 30 minutes on WHAV.