Winter Storm Stella & Hudson Valley Weather

On Monday, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a state of emergency in preparation for Tuesday’s snowstorm, with expectations that New York City and Long Island might be the worst hit. Governor Cuomo directed all non-essential state employees to stay home, and most schools in the state were canceled. “The state is responding quickly to changing weather conditions,” Cuomo said, “and we encourage New Yorkers to stay home where possible and continue exercising caution as we ride out the storm.” However, as the storm shifted, so too did the state’s response. “Mother Nature is an unpredictable lady sometimes. She was unpredictable once again today,” Cuomo said.

Metro-North trains in the Hudson Valley were shut down Tuesday morning at 8:00 AM as transit officials were wrestling with the changing storm patterns, but set to reopen by 6:00 PM with limited service until 11:00 PM. Tractor-trailers were banned on interstates on I-81, I-86/Route 17 and I-88, and from the 570-mile state Thruway and Northway, which runs from Albany to Canada. I-84 that runs from Putnam County to Orange County — stretching from the borders of Pennsylvania to Connecticut — was reopened at 8:00 PM. Most flights were canceled Tuesday at Stewart, LaGuardia, JFK and upstate airports.

Western New York was also hit with heavy snow — after dealing with a fierce windstorm last week — and the state needed to shift resources from New York City and Long Island to upstate, which the state of emergency allowed the state to do more easily. There were no immediate reports of deaths associated with the storm, which was approaching snowfall records for mid-March in parts of the Catskills and Albany area.

Reported snowfall accumulations after the height of the storm were as follows:

  • Dutchess County

Annandale-On-Hudson, 17.5 inches at 3:30 PM
LaGrange, 18 inches at 4:45 PM
Pine Plains, 26 inches at 3:15PM
Poughquag, 17.5 inches at 3:15PM
Red Oaks Mill, 26 inches at 2:55PM
Rhinebeck, 18.5 inches at 3PM
Salt Point, 19 inches at 2:40PM

  • Orange County

Berea, 17.5 inches at 5:22PM
Cornwall Landing, 18 inches at 4PM
Gardnertown, 20 inches at 330PM
Goshen, 22 inches at 4:46PM
Highland Mills, 18.4 inches at 2PM
Montgomery, 23.5 inches at 2:33PM
Mount Hope, 23 inches at 2:33PM
New Windsor, 17 inches at 2:56PM
Hudson Valley, 16 inches at 2:33PM

  • Putnam County

Cold Spring, 14.6 inches at 5:02PM
Mahopac, 13.4 inches at 3:45PM

  • Sullivan County

Callicoon Center, 24 inches at 3:16PM

  • Ulster County

Highmount, 18 inches at 2:50PM
Highland, 17 inches at 3:24PM
Kingston, 22 inches at 2PM
Phoenicia, 23.7 inches at 5:53PM
Pine Hill, 20 inches at 3:37PM

Despite the snowfall, officials are warning the public that brush burning is going to be banned in the Hudson Valley with rising temperatures predicted for the coming weeks leading to heightened conditions for wildfires. The Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is reminding residents that with warming temperatures and dryer conditions, residential brush burning is forbidden from March 16 through May 14 across New York state. “While many people associate wildfires with the western United States … New York prohibits residential burning during the high-risk fire season to reduce wildfires and protect people, property, and natural resources. The ban has been extremely effective in reducing the number of wildfires, and we’re encouraging New Yorkers to put safety first.” DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos said. Violators are subject to criminal charges and a fine of at least $500. If you see any environmental law violations, you are encouraged to call 1-800-TIPP DEC (1-800-847-7332).

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