EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

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February 6, 2014

Taken by Storm

Add 10 more inches of snow to the season's totals

Another winter storm walloped the area yesterday, forcing schools to cancel classes while leaving about 10 inches of snow in the second of three storms expected this week.

Forecasters said the commute today should not be bad, providing highway crews stay on top of the roads. But with temperatures not getting above freezing, slush could freeze and make traveling treacherous. State Police were already reporting slick conditions on some secondary roads last night, citing black ice and slush.

Yesterday’s storm pushed the Boston area past the normal annual snowfall total, with four to six weeks of prime snow season left to go and another potent storm a possibility for this weekend, a National Weather Service meteorologist said.

The snow already has piled up this winter, with about a half dozen storms dumping 44.8 inches on the Boston area so far this year, according to the National Weather Service. The average annual total is 43.8 inches.

“It’s only the middle of winter. We’ve got a long way to go,” said Alan Dunham, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Taunton.

Last winter, the region got a total of 63.4 inches. In the 2011-12 winter, the area got a scant 9.3 inches total.

The worst of yesterday’s storm hit in the morning through about 1 p.m., with low visibility due to freezing fog and snow falling at about an inch an hour.

“The thing is it’s hazardous driving because it’s a white out,” North Andover director of public works Bruce Thibodeau said.

Dunham, at the National Weather Service in Taunton, said the worst of it was over by about 1:30 p.m. though light snow continued to fall throughout the afternoon.

Methuen Police Lt. Michael Wnek said residents generally heeded officials’ calls to stay off the roads, and the light traffic has been helpful.

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