Town officials in the area said they were well-prepared for Winter Storm Hercules, which hit major Northeast cities and dumped anywhere from 6 to 12 inches of snow on parts of Windham County. No major accidents have been reported and road crews have been working hard to make sure the roads stay as safe as possible.
Rockingham Highway Supervisor Mike Hindes told the Reformer the storm passed through with no big issues, though a couple of hydraulic hoses had to be fixed.
"It's the kind of storm we like ... light and fluffy. It's easier to move and easier to plow," he said Friday morning. "No complaints here. It was a nice, quiet storm. I'll take it."
He said his department took all the same precautions it normally does in terms of preventative maintenance. He said his workers always have to make sure all the department's lights and vehicles are in working order and it is important to have plenty of sand and salt at the ready. Hindes said the six to eight inches of snow that fell in Rockingham have made roads slippery, though he would not call them dangerous.
"They're not treacherous by any means," he said.
Wilmington Town Manager Scott Murphy said no new is good news in regards to not hearing from Highway Department head Bill Hunt.
"It's just another storm for us. We're actually in decent shape," he said, adding that the town got a foot of snow. "We were preparing for a little bit more stronger snow. This is a dry, fluffy type of snow."
Murphy said his biggest concern now is for those with inadequate housing, disabilities or insufficient heating funds. He said there are plenty of people in his town who cannot physically shovel their property or whose vehicles likely will not start in the cold temperatures.
He said Friday morning he noticed many vehicles going through town, likely on ski trips.
"I'm sure the mountains will be busy, but local people are really just trying to survive to get through the winter," Murphy said.
The Snow & Ice Management Association, a North American trade organization, has offered a few tips to help people stay safe if driving in the snow is necessary. SIMA recommends checking the weather reports before hitting the road. If it has already started to rain, sleet or snow, listen to the news to hear about your local road conditions before leaving your home. If the roads are hazardous, consider staying home.
Another pointer is to make a to-do list. You may need to go to the grocery store, the drug store, or the hardware store -- but you can wait to drop off your dry cleaning. Run these errands during the day and avoid going out at night.
Domenic Poli can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 802-254-2311, ext. 277. You can follow him on Twitter @dpoli_reformer.