MTA, NICE Anticipate Service Cancellations, Schools Closed During Winter Storm

Late-season winter storm is causing delays and service modifications with public bus and train lines.

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The late-winter storm is expected to disrupt bus and train lines across Long Island.

Photo by: Ralph Cristello

A late-season storm is currently hitting the Long Island and greater New York area. Expected snowfall has been downgraded significantly as much of the Island has received totals closer to 3-6” of snow than the higher amounts originally forecast. Western and Northern parts of the Island will likely receive the most accumulation.

A warm front has moved north to Long Island much quicker than expected, turning what would have been snow into a combination of rain, freezing rain, sleet, and snow, and that excessive precipitation is coming hand-in-hand with likely announcements of major public transportation delays and cancellations as roads and railways become unsafe. Though it may be coming down as liquid, the ground is still cold which allows for the potential that rain could freeze after falling, particularly in the evening as temperatures drop back below freezing.

The MTA reports that all Long Island Rail Road lines are currently running according to their regular weekday schedules, but warns cancellations are to be expected as weather conditions worsen. Commuters traveling on New York City Transit, Long Island Rail Road and Metro-North are encouraged to stay home, if possible, MTA officials said. For those who do insist on traveling today, the MTA encourages commuters to sign up for free email and text alerts to keep them abreast of any service changes or cancellations.

NICE Bus reports that, as of 7:14 a.m., all bus routes are currently running and that while roads are slick, they are currently passable. However, NICE Bus noted that they will be monitoring the developing snow storm carefully and will be working with local and state authorities. Based upon road conditions, passengers should expect major delays, service modifications, detours and the potential of service suspension by early afternoon. North Shore routes will become particularly difficult as the storm progresses, NICE officials said.

Suffolk Transit reports that all fixed route service as well as SCAT (assisted transportation) service is suspended for the entire day today; they presently expect to resume normal service on Wednesday, 3/15. However, Suffolk Transit officials stated that riders should check the Suffolk County website in the afternoon to confirm that service will be restored starting Wednesday morning.

The blizzard has also caused schools across Long Island to close for the day.

The NWS is noting that current snowfall rates are falling within 2 to 4 inches per hour, with Northeast winds hitting at 20 to 30 mph with gusts up to 50 mph, resulting in whiteout conditions and near-zero visibility at times; temperatures will remain in the upper 20’s. All local authorities are encouraging residents to remain at home for the duration of the storm.

For the most up to date weather information, head over to the LongIsland.com Weather Center, where you can find the latest weather forecasts, advisories and more.

To get the latest traffic & road conditions before traveling, visit the LongIsland.com Traffic Center, and be sure to check out the live traffic feeds on our Traffic Cam Page.

Please visit our Long Island School Closures Page for regular updates of school closings in your district.