Schools closed, parking bans in place as nor'easter rolls in

Mar 12, 2018

With school closed and parking bans and trash collection delays in effect, the town s is gearing up to fight yet another Nor’easter.

Dartmouth Public Schools and Bishop Stang High School will be closed on March 13. Friends Academy is currently on March Break. Dartmouth Town Hall will also be closed on March 13, and all scheduled meetings for that day have been cancelled.

University of Massachusetts Dartmouth students are away on spring break, but a number of offices and services on campus will be closed on March 13.

The Department of Public Works has announced a parking ban will go into effect in Dartmouth at 10 p.m. Monday, and will remain in effect through 6 p.m. Wednesday, March 14. No parking is allowed on the hydrant side during the ban. For roads without hydrants, parking is only allowed on the even house numbered side.

Trash and recycling collection will be delayed by one day starting on Tuesday. Tuesday pick-up is now on Wednesday, Wednesday pick-up is now Thursday, and Thursday pick-up is Friday. The Transfer Station is also closed on Tuesday.

DATTCO has cancelled all Boston-bound bus service in the southeastern Massachusetts area.

It’s all in preparation for yet another Nor’easter expected to move into the region overnight and into Tuesday. A winter storm warning is in effect until 8 p.m. Tuesday.

Estimates of 10 to 15 inches of snow, with localized amounts up to 18 inches are expected to fall late Monday evening and all day Tuesday. It’s one of the highest snowfall potentials this season.

Public works crews will be out before the storm to pre-treat roads with a special brine, which will help crews remove snow and prevent large chunks of ice and snow from sticking to roadways, according to DPW Director David Hickox.

That was a big problem during the last major snowstorm on January 4. Heavy rain just before the storm washed most of the pretreatment away, leaving large patches of ice on roadways for several days due to very low temperatures.

This time around, Hickox doesn’t anticipate those issues assuming the forecast holds true.

“Our forecast says it may start off as a little light rain but will change to snow quickly,” Hickox said.

Hickox said the current forecast is for light and fluffy snow, which may keep damage to trees and power lines to a minimum. Even fluffy snow can become compacted on pavement, however, making quick removal necessary.

Hickox anticipates dispatching 35 pieces of equipment during the storm, with plow drivers starting work at around midnight, although a specific start time will be made as the storm draws near.

“Stay off the roads and let the crews do their jobs,” Hickox said.

The Dartmouth Police Department released guidelines for residents as the third nor'easter in as many weeks moves into the region.

"Please use caution before, during and after this storm,” said Dartmouth Police Chief Brian Levesque. “We are expecting significant amounts of snow and strong wind gusts so be sure to prepare for the possibility of power outages and check on your neighbors.”

Before the storm, police urge residents to make sure they are prepared for power outages and stock up on items like batteries for flashlights. Candles should be kept away from anything flammable. Cell phones, laptops, and tablets should be charged as much as possible, and neighbors should coordinate to assist those who are at risk and may need help.

During the storm, avoid venturing out and stay indoors. Call Eversource at (800) 286-5000 to report a power outage. To report a gas leak, call 911. Other gas-related issues can be directed to Eversource. Follow the department's social media pages for updates.

After the storm, residents should ensure gas vents attached to homes are cleared of snow, shovel out hydrants, and avoid going near or driving over downed power lines. Check properties for trees that could be in danger of falling, and clear debris from storm drains. Avoid pumping water from sump pumps into the road.