It's snow joke: More winter weather coming to New England

AP News
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Posted: Feb 10, 2015 9:28 PM
It's snow joke: More winter weather coming to New England

BOSTON (AP) — As New Englanders dug out from 2 more feet of snow Tuesday, there appeared to be no relief in sight. Meteorologists predict more snow is on the way Thursday and perhaps this weekend in the snow-choked region.

Here's how the region is coping:

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TRAVEL WOES

Boston-area subways, trolleys and commuter rail trains remained idle Tuesday, with only limited bus service continuing.

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority said it needed the break to clear snow and ice from tracks. Service is set to resume Wednesday at a reduced level, with fewer cars and less frequent service on most lines of the nation's fifth-largest and oldest system.

Boston hospitals set up sleeping areas for workers, and police gave doctors and nurses rides to work. At Logan International Airport, many flights were still reporting delays through Tuesday afternoon.

Amtrak canceled train service from Brunswick, Maine, to Boston because of snow removal.

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SNOW WAY: MORE IS COMING

After a brief respite Wednesday, forecasters say much of New England is on track to get more snow Thursday and into the Friday morning commute, with 3 inches expected in Boston and 6 or more south of the city. A much larger storm could dump appreciably higher amounts Sunday into Monday, but meteorologists said it was still too early to say how much.

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TRIALS DELAYED

Two high-profile Massachusetts trials have been further delayed by the snow.

State court officials said testimony in the murder trial of former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez would not resume until Wednesday.

Jury selection for the federal trial of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev also was called off Tuesday. It's slated to resume Wednesday as well.

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LIBERACE'S PIANO

The roof at a Massachusetts music store that's home to a rhinestone-encrusted grand piano once owned by Liberace collapsed under the weight of snow.

Rockland Fire Chief Scott Duffey said a large section of roof fell into the showroom Tuesday morning at the Piano Mill. No one was in the building at the time. Owner Rob Norris said the Liberace piano, which has 88,888 rhinestones and has been appraised at $500,000, was not damaged.

The roof collapse was among a number reported across the state. No injuries have been reported in any of them.

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SKYLIGHT FALL

A maintenance worker checking out a snowy warehouse roof north of Boston fell 27 feet through a skylight and was injured.

Peabody Deputy Fire Chief Richard Nelson told the Salem News the U.S. Foods employee was taken by helicopter to a hospital with injuries including broken legs.

Nelson said it appears the skylight was covered with snow when the man stepped on it Tuesday morning. He said the man was conscious and was "kind of joking" with rescuers.

Nelson said the company was trying to be proactive about the 3 feet of snow on its roof and the employee was assessing whether a crew needed to be brought in to remove it.

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BOY RESCUED FROM HARBOR

A young boy playing on snow piles with friends ended up in Boston Harbor's icy Fort Point Channel but was rescued by a bystander.

The bystander, Victor Moisescu, told WCVB-TV he heard several children playing near a bridge on Tuesday and then heard them calling, "Where are you?"

Moisescu said he saw a boy treading water and told him to swim toward a nearby recreational dock. He said, "I pulled him out right onto the dock."

Other bystanders also tried to help and called 911. Emergency crews took the boy to a hospital as a precaution.

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SCHOOL CLOSINGS

At least one Massachusetts school district has thrown up the white flag.

The Pentucket Regional School District near the New Hampshire border canceled classes through the rest of the week. Schools will reopen Feb. 23 when students return from their traditional weeklong winter break.

Superintendent Jeff Mulqueen says the safety of snow-laden school roofs are among his concerns.

In Boston, Mayor Marty Walsh says public schools may have to consider holding Saturday classes or cutting short spring break if students lose more days to snow.

The district will already be holding classes on Evacuation Day (March 17) and Bunker Hill Day (June 17) to make up for lost time and extending the school year from June 19 to June 30, he said Tuesday.

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SNOW BUDGETS

Gov. Charlie Baker says he'll be seeking federal disaster aid for this winter's snowfall to help ease the pressure from state and local government budgets being strained by cleanup costs.

Mayor Walsh says Boston alone has spent over $30 million with more than five weeks left of winter, far exceeding its $18.5 million snow removal budget.

Baker also announced other measures Tuesday, including activating about 500 members of the state's National Guard, purchasing two snow melters that can melt up to 25 large truckloads of snow an hour and appealing to nearby Vermont, New York and Pennsylvania for additional resources.

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SNOW BABY

In Boston, a state trooper helped deliver a baby after the mother went into labor on the way to the hospital early Tuesday. Trooper Patrick Devin assisted in the birth and wrapped the baby boy in a blanket.

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Associated Press writers Bob Salsberg, Steve LeBlanc and Tracee M. Herbaugh in Boston contributed to this report.