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February 7, 2013

Storm on Friday could dump more than a foot of snow in N.H.

Region braces for significant winter storm

Windham Town Administrator David Sullivan may be the most optimistic man in Southern New Hampshire.

“It’s not going to snow,” Sullivan joked yesterday when asked about the likelihood of the town’s deliberative sessions taking place as planned tomorrow and Saturday.

Deliberative sessions, school events, community gatherings and travel could all be put on hold if a major snowstorm whacks the area, as expected, tomorrow into Saturday.

It’s unclear if this storm will rival the “Blizzard of ‘78,” which dumped 2 feet of snow on the state, but it could set records.

“One of our models is suggesting more than 2 feet of snow for Southern New Hampshire,” said meteorologist Steve Capriola of the National Weather Service in Gray, Maine. “But it’s just too tough to say how much we will get this far in advance.”

A blizzard watch has been issued for eastern Massachusetts.

NWS meteorologist Chris Legro said this storm will be the most significant one since 22 inches fell in October 2011.

“It’s going to be a high-impact storm,” Legro said. “We have growing confidence that we will see at least a foot, with the potential for more.”

Legro said light flurries will begin tonight into tomorrow morning. The heaviest snow is expected between mid-afternoon tomorrow to Saturday morning. Wind gusts could be as strong as 50 mph.

Rick Russell, Salem’s director of public works, and his crew are starting to prepare for the worst.

“We are hearing it could be up to a foot of snow,” he said yesterday. “We are going to be as prepared as we can be.”

The storm could put several deliberative sessions in jeopardy.

Windham and Londonderry have their school district deliberative sessions scheduled for tomorrow night, as does the town of Hampstead. Windham’s town deliberative session is set for Saturday morning.

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