Small Tuesday Snowstorm Sets Students Back

Students at Ramapo said Tuesday's snowstorm was a major inconvenience despite moderate accumulation totals.

The storm, which blew into Northern New Jersey early Tuesday morning, deposited an average of 1.7 inches of snow in Bergen County, according to the National Weather Service.

Snowfall observations were taken in Franklin Lakes, Tenafly and Ridgewood, with Franklin Lakes showing the largest accumulation at 4.0 inches. Tenafly and Ridgewood each experienced half an inch of precipitation.

Flurries persisted into the afternoon hours. Temperatures in the region peaked at about 40 degrees and dropped into the low 30s, resulting in frozen slush on roadways that some say created hazardous driving conditions.

"Now that I have to drive pretty regularly, it makes things difficult," said commuting senior Michael Lake. "It makes you worried. Some people have a lot of trouble that need to get places."

Still, Lake commended the efforts of local municipalities to prevent the freezing of roadways.

"They seemed to do a pretty good job salting and plowing it," he said. "It wasn't too dangerous. Maybe in some places, but not here."

Sophomore Jake Kisor said he encounters one of such places regularly during his commute to Ramapo.

"I drive over a mountain on the way to school, and it gets pretty bad on that," he said. Kisor said he had to leave campus early to make sure he got home safely.

"I missed my evening class, since the roads were going to freeze over," he added.

Classes were held on schedule Tuesday in spite of the snow. For those who live on campus, the storm made walking outside a challenge.

"The sidewalks were really slippery, and they weren't clean," said student Alex Mazza. "My feet got soaked."

Mazza also said rising temperatures during the day might have hampered cleanup efforts.

"I think it mostly melted, that's why it wasn't clean," she said.

Junior Angela Kovacs said the weather forced the cancelation of her Tuesday night class.

"My professor couldn't get to class," she said.

For Kovacs, the professor's choice not to hold the session was welcome news.

"I was anticipating the school canceling and was surprised they didn't," she said.

Ramapo College advises in its cancelation policy that students and faculty defer to "their best judgment" in instances when the campus remains open during inclement weather.

Freshman Tyler Blackman said he heard that power was out in the area, but did not experience any outage at Ramapo.

"On campus it was completely fine," he said.

Neither the college nor Orange and Rockland Utilities, which supplies power to Mahwah, reported power failures as a result of the storm.

The Weather Channel is predicting clear skies and moderately cool temperatures for the weekend, with a high of 51 degrees on Sunday.

Even so, senior Janet Namkung fears that Tuesday's storm-the second snow event for the month of November-signals a harsher winter to come than the northeast experienced in recent years.

"Last year, we only had snow during the Halloween storm," she said.

The October 2011 nor'easter, which blanketed portions of the northeast in several feet of snow and caused widespread damage and power outages, preceded an otherwise mild winter season.

"A few years before that I remember it was really bad," Namkung said. "This year will probably be somewhere in the middle."

With finals week ending on Dec. 21, students and faculty at Ramapo must endure three more weeks of potentially snowy weather before the College closes for winter break.


– With additional reporting by Brian Nazzaro and Brendon Templin