Essex County, NJ – Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo, Jr. and Sheriff Armando Fontoura issued a snow emergency on Friday, January 22nd. Weather forecasts call for Essex County to experience a blizzard on Saturday, January 22nd, which could bring as much as 12 inches of snow and wind gusts from 35 to 55 mph. Residents are being encouraged to stay indoors during the storm and motorists are being advised to avoid parking their vehicles on county roadways so Public Works crews can remove snow more efficiently.

“All the information we are receiving indicates we will have blizzard conditions and significant snow fall on Saturday. We encourage our residents to remain safe during these upcoming snow events, stay indoors and only travel if it is absolutely necessary,” DiVincenzo said. “Our Public Works crews work around the clock to ensure our County roads are passable and safe. Asking residents and motorists to not park their cars on County roads makes it easier for our plows to remove snow from curb to curb and our salt trucks to spread salt to melt ice,” he said.

“The weather is going to be bad on Saturday. There will be limited visibility because of the blizzard conditions and the strong winds could bring down tree branches and power lines. We are advising everyone to stay indoors where it is safe,” Fontoura said.

According to weather forecasts utilized by the County, the blizzard is expected to begin Saturday, January 23rd as early as 3 a.m. It will bring about 12 inches of snow and high winds with gusts from 35 to 55 mph.

Because of the weather, visiting hours at the Essex County Correctional Facility have been cancelled on Saturday, January 23rd; Essex County Turtle Back Zoo, Essex County Codey Arena and the Essex County Environmental Center are closed on Saturday, January 23rd; and Senior Buildings located in the Essex County Parks System will be closed from Saturday, January 23rd to Monday, January 25th.

DiVincenzo also reminded property owners and residents to help maximize public safety by not shoveling or plowing snow from their private properties onto county roadways. Snow removed from sidewalks, driveways and parking lots should be kept on-site.

Essex County maintains about 215 miles of roads.