Editor's note: Five Things You Need To Know Today is a Patch column that provides readers with essential, daily information at a glance. If you know of something happening in town that did not make our list, please add it in the comment section!
1. National Weather Service Issues Blizzard Warning for Foxborough Area
What began as a blizzard watch for the Foxborough area has now been upgraded to a blizzard warning.
The National Weather Service issued the warning for the majority of Eastern Massachusetts Thursday afternoon, as it anticipates about 2 feet of snow to descend upon the area Friday into Saturday.
"White out conditions are anticipated as roads become snow-covered by the Friday evening commute," the warning states. "Strong north-northeast winds are anticipated with gusts up to around 60 miles per hour, resulting in blowing and drifting of snow. Damage to trees and structures along with scattered power outages are anticipated."
Residents can expect the potential of snow falling at 3-to-4 inches per hour and wind gusts of more than 20 miles per hour.
Click here for our Winter Storm: Foxborough Information Center, which will provide you with everything you need to know about the upcoming storm. http://foxborough.patch.com/articles/winter-storm-foxborough-information-center#photo-12992817
2. Foxborough Public Schools, Regional Charter School Closed Friday
After initially announcing Foxborough Public Schools would open for a half day Friday, Superintendent of Schools Debra Spinelli decided to close schools altogether after Gov. Deval Patrick urged educators to do so Thursday.
Foxborough Regional Charter School Director Dr. Mark Logan also closed school after originally announcing early dismissal was in effect Friday.
3. Storm-Related Cancellations
As of Friday morning, here’s a look at cancellations in Foxborough as a result of the expected blizzard:
- Invensys YMCA Foxboro Branch will close Friday at 2 p.m. A decision will be made later regarding Saturday's hours of operation.
- Saturday’s Foxborough Democratic Caucus has been postponed to Sunday, Feb. 17 at the McGinty Room of the Foxborough Public Safety Building.
- Union Church of South Foxboro Kids Blitz program and WIRED youth group are cancelled Friday night.
- Union Church of South Foxboro Men's Breakfast is cancelled Saturday morning.
NOTE: Know of a cancellation or closing this weekend as a result of the weather? Let us know in the comments section below!
4. Foxborough’s Board of Selectmen to meet Friday Morning
Foxborough’s Board of Selectmen will meet Friday at 11 a.m. at Town Hall to discuss the incoming blizzard and receive updates from department heads regarding the state of the town.
5. National Grid Prepares for Severe Winter Storm Headed for New England
Following press release submitted by National Grid:
With a severe winter storm on the way that weather forecasters already are calling a storm of historic proportions, National Grid has started preparing for widespread, prolonged power outages that could result from the predicted blizzard-like conditions. Although the path of the storm still is being monitored, crew assignments are being developed and equipment readied in anticipation of harsh weather.
“We continue to monitor the weather and are taking action now to be able to respond quickly and safely to potential outages that could occur. Our pre-planning activities are in anticipation of a very damaging storm,” said Kathy Lyford, vice president, New England Operations. “We take the safety of the public and our employees very seriously. We are reaching out to our life support and critical care customers and have plans in place to provide regular updates for customers.”
Several steps have already been taken to prepare for the possibility of service interruptions. These include the following:
- Implementing our storm command system to coordinate preparation and restoration efforts throughout the event
- Contacting our contractors with whom we regularly work for storm support
- Planning to bring in additional resources and crews as needed
- Continuous monitoring of the storm, setting up staging areas and positioning our resources to best respond to storm outages
- Reaching out to state, regional and local officials to inform them of our plans and open the lines of communication
- Providing routine public updates
Customers Urged to Keep in Touch
In addition to Outage Central, National Grid offers a number of ways for customers to report outages or learn about restoration efforts and important safety information. Here’s how:
- Outage reporting hotline – Massachusetts and Rhode Island customers can call 1-800-465-1212 to report an outage.
- Text messages – Customers can receive text message alerts and updates through a free service the company offers. Text the word STORM to NGRID (64743) to sign up for the service.
- National Grid uses social media – Facebook and Twitter – to communicate with customers about service issues and interruptions during storms.
- E-mail alerts are also available to customers who create an online profile on the company’s website. All alert services can be started and stopped at the customer’s request.
Customers can use their mobile devices to track outage information and storm related safety tips through National Grid’s new mobile site that can be accessed at nationalgrid.com