Watch CBS News

Freezing, Flooding Now Concerns In New Jersey

NEPTUNE, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie declared a state of emergency in four counties Thursday, as wind-whipped snow slammed the state.

The governor declared a state of emergency in Cape May, Atlantic, Ocean and Monmouth counties and said all state offices will be closed.

"Please stay off the roads and stay sheltered and warm," Christie said on Twitter.

A blizzard warning had been in effect until 7 p.m. along the Jersey shore and portions of central and southern New Jersey. Bayville and Brick Township saw the most accumulation, with 18 inches.

Once the snowfall stopped, a slippery sheet of ice formed underneath, which could linger through the weekend as temperatures continue to drop, CBS2's Meg Baker reported. Flooding is also a concern, especially during high tide.

BLIZZARD 2018: Latest | Live Updates | Videos | PhotosForecast | Alerts | Radar | Schools | Traffic | Safety Tips

Monmouth County deployed 225 pieces of snow removal equipment Thursday.

"We'll have crews until all roads clear, and then we'll keep spreading crews throughout the weekend," Monmouth County Director of Public Works John Tobia said.

Snow drifts from strong winds made it hard for plows to keep roads clear and for drivers to see.

"At one point, it was just simply hard to even follow the road. It was treacherous," said Tom Murphy, of Morris County.

Larry Schmidt dug his way out of his driveway to pick up a few snacks.

"The main roads seem alright, the side roads are pretty bad. Took a while to get dug out," he said. 

Matthew Reyes will be working overnight to clear out local businesses.

"You feel the burn already, it's warming me up, actually," he said.

Jim Fallon said there were six inches of water underneath the snow near his home.

"We've been house-bound all day," he said.

He ventured out, because he was hungry.

"Patty put on meatballs, sausage and pasta. We ran out of Prego, and I was just praying these guys were open," he said.

Earlier in the day on the Garden State Parkway, visibility was poor heading south with near whiteout conditions at some points, CBS2's Janelle Burrell reported.

"Drifting as soon as plow crews are plowing, wind is blowing it right back in," Tobia said.

"We are seeing some heavy winds, particularly along the coast," said Monmouth County Sheriff Shaun Golden. "If you don't have to be out, don't be out." 

Some drivers chose to ignore that advice. One SUV drove through icy flood waters near Pershing Ave in Manasquan.

"The street floods, usually not up to us, but pretty bad down near the bridge. Driving through it is not a smart thing to do," Brody Gaynor said.

Over by the Manasquan inlet, water flowed over the bulkhead as high tide rolled in.

"It's going to be the continuation of the tides due to the winds coming out of the east. When we have a lunar high tide event we have flooding and we have to worry about the freezing," Manasquan Mayor Ed Donovan said.

The wind made shoveling difficult, too.

"Just going to wait it out, looks like Monday, Tuesday warmer temps," Steven Crines said.

NJ TRANSIT bus, rail and light rail are cross honoring passes/tickets system wide due to the storm.

New Jersey also authorized a two-hour delayed opening from normal start times for all non-essential state employees.

(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.