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BOSTON – The Baker-Polito Administration directed all non-emergency state employees working in Executive Branch agencies not to report to their workplaces tomorrow, Friday, February 4, 2022. With this winter storm forecast to create icy and hazardous travel conditions across the Commonwealth, the Administration is urging residents to stay off roadways when possible tomorrow, especially during the early morning hours.
“Driving tomorrow is expected to be horrible, especially tomorrow morning, and we are asking everyone to be careful and stay off the roads if possible,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “If you have to travel, please take extra time, drive slowly and look out for the flash freeze on the roads.”
“The morning commute will be especially treacherous, as the forecast calls for rain, sleet, freezing rain then snow and as temperatures drop quickly, we expect icing and a flash freeze,” said MassDOT Highway Administrator Jonathan Gulliver. “Crews will be patrolling, but due to the nature of this storm, wet pavement could become icy quite quickly.”
The National Weather Service is warning that the combination of rain, sleet and a flash freeze will make driving dangerous across all of Massachusetts overnight tonight and most of the day tomorrow.
Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) employees will be contacted by their supervisor to determine their assignments and schedules for the day. The RMV will post further updates about individual Customer Service Center openings, closings and road test cancellations or delays and hours atwww.mass.gov/RMV and contact any customers with impacted appointment cancellations or delays. All other Executive Branch state offices will be closed to the public tomorrow. Employees who have the capacity to telework will be expected to do so in accordance with the Telework Policy.
Overnight rain will make it challenging for crews to effectively pre-treat roadways, as road treatments may wash away as rain continues to fall and temperatures drop. The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) has approximately 3,900 pieces of state and vendor equipment available for snow and ice operations which includes over 1,400 plow and spreader combos, 2,100 plows, and 460 front-end loaders. Crews will be conducting snow and ice operations throughout the day Friday. To ensure the safety of travelers, MassDOT may implement speed limit restrictions on certain highways at certain points throughout the day.
The MBTA is continuing to monitor and prepare for the storm. Travelers should expect delays, especially on bus routes tomorrow. The T is replacing Mattapan trolleys with shuttle buses to provide Mattapan Line service and pulling all 60-foot buses from service. Customers should visit www.mbta.com/winter to learn about any delays or impacts to service.
The Baker-Polito Administration remains in close contact with the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency, the National Weather Service, MassDOT, the MBTA and the Massachusetts State Police to monitor the forecast and will work to alert the public with important updates or notifications.