Patrick Sends State Employees Home Early as Big Snow Approaches, Temperatures to Drop

Massachusetts is bracing for the first snowstorm of the New Year.

“To state the obvious, it’s snowing outside,” Patrick said at a noon press conference Thursday.

Patrick says the effects of that snow will vary from town to town, and is asking residents to pay attention to local public safety instructions.

He is sending state workers home early, but is calling up 400 National Guard members to help as needed.

“Temperatures like this with wind chill is a very dangerous circumstance and the impact can come on quickly,” the governor says. “Excessive exposure can lead to frostbite and hypothermia.”

And excessive winds can lead to power outages. Massachusetts Secretary of Energy Rick Sullivan says utilities have filed “adequate” plans to cope with that.

“The biggest concerns will be later in the evening when the winds pick up,” Sullivan says. “The plans are filed but it will be the execution on the ground that we are closely monitoring.”

The governor is planning to give another update at around 6:15 this evening.