BOSTON -- New England communities declared storm emergencies, canceled schools and imposed parking bans after forecasters said a fourth snow storm in a month could dump up to 10 inches of snow in some places Friday.
The National Weather Service said light, fluffy flakes would be followed by heavier snow in parts of central Connecticut, central Massachusetts, southeastern New Hampshire and Rhode Island.
Meteorologist Benjamin Sipprell predicted the quick-moving storm would hit the morning commute the hardest. It was not expected to affect power lines and tree limbs, as a wet, heavy snow did a week ago. Sipprell said ski areas would particularly like the latest fresh powder.
Gov. Deval Patrick in Massachusetts called for a delayed start time of 11 a.m. for non-emergency state workers. Commuters were encouraged to take public transportation or carpool to help work crews get the snow off the roads more quickly.
Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino announced a snow emergency and parking ban for the city, where the forecast called for up to 10 inches of snow. Boston public schools were closed Friday. The Massachusetts towns of Amesbury, Chelsea and New Bedford also declared emergencies.
Rhode Island Department of Transportation Director Michael Lewis said people should consider shifting their work hours to later in the day to avoid the worst of the storm. Public schools in Providence were closed Friday, and a citywide parking ban was in effect.
The weather service said temperatures would drop immediately following the snows.
A persistent weather pattern was fueling the storms.