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State Of Emergency Declared, Schools Closed Tuesday

Jan 26, 2015 01:56PM ● By Bill Gilman
Town Manager Richard Montuori was meeting with his department heads at Tewksbury Police Headquarters Monday afternoon to make final preparations for what has been described as "top 5 historic" blizzard bearing down on Massachusetts.
According to the most recent forecast by the National Weather Service, Winter Storm Juno is expected to dump 2-3 feet of snow on the communities in the Bay State, depending on its track.
As of 1 p.m. Monday, Tewksbury was projected to receive at least 30 inches and as much as 32 inches of snow. Sustained winds of 25 MPH are expected int he Merrimack Valley with gusts up to 45 MPH.
With the storm expected to hit the region around 7 p.m. Monday, Superintendent of Schools Dr. John O'Connor has cancelled all school activities, including sporting events, scheduled for Monday night and has cancelled school completely on Tuesday.
Montuori said he expects to take similar action.
"Most likely we will be closing Town Offices on Tuesday," he said. this would include Town Hall, the Town Library and the Senior Center.
Republic Services has notified Tewksbury officials that due to the storm they will delay trash pickup. Trash pickup is now Thursday this week.
Gov. Charlie Baker has declared a State of Emergency, closing all State Offices on Tuesday and imposing a travel ban to take effect at 12 a.m. Tuesday, on non-essential vehicles.
“I can’t stress this part enough. Please stay off the roads,” said Baker.
Tewksbury will be enforcing its parking ban, with cars parked on the side of public streets being towed to allow plows to clear the roads. According to Montuori, private plowing contractors employed by the town during major storms are being asked to add vehicles to augment the town's fleet.
Monday afternoon, dump trucks filled with salt and sand could be seen gathering at the DPW building on Whipple Road.
Montuori said he had been in contact with National Grid and Verizon throughout the day Monday regarding their plans for dealing with the power outages expected to accompany the storm.
"They seem to be out in front it," he said. "It's difficult for them to figure out at this point which areas (of the state) will be hardest hit."
According to Montuori, no decision has yet been made on opening a shelter at the Senior Center.
Montuori said and his department heads will continue to use the Town Web Site, Twitter feeds and Code Red to keep residents up to date on Emergency information.

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