HARTFORD, Conn. (CBSNewYork/AP) — A fierce nor’easter dropped a foot of snow or more over much of Connecticut, hitting hardest in the eastern part of the state.

Towns in eastern Connecticut were catching the brunt of the snowfall, with 22.5 inches reported in Hampton by 10 a.m. and 20 inches reported in Killingly. Towns in western Connecticut were reporting less than 6 inches of snow. The National Weather Service said the snow is expected to taper off by 5 p.m. or 6 p.m. For central Connecticut, the weather service reduced its forecast to up to 16 inches, down from the initial estimate of up to 2 feet.

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Despite fears that the storm could knock out power to more than 100,000 customers in Connecticut, outages have been minimal so far.

Connecticut Light & Power warned customers Monday that the storm could bring down power lines and knock out electricity, but it was reporting only 1,600 customers in Greenwich without power Tuesday morning.

Al Lara, a spokesman for CL&P parent company Northeast Utilities, said the snow has been light and powdery, posing little threat to power lines that typically come down under ice or wet and heavy snow. Gov. Dannel P. Malloy said an early-morning outage, affecting more than 500 customers, was the result of a plow truck hitting a utility pole.

Officials are now focusing on temperatures dropping.

“Big concerns could be the amount of energy that’s going to be used in this and the potential impact on the grid for New England, as the cold wears on and the demand for electricity goes through the roof,” Dan Warzoha, emergency management coordinator in Greenwich, told WCBS 880’s Fran Schneidau.

A travel ban on state highways was lifted at 2 p.m. Malloy said people stayed off the roads as instructed overnight, and there were only about a dozen traffic accidents after the ban took effect, with only one injury.

“Under normal circumstances, we would’ve expected hundreds of accidents on our highway systems last night,” Malloy said.

In Stamford, the commuter rail system was coming back to life Tuesday afternoon, 1010 WINS’ Al Jones reported.

“The work day is over, I mean, it wasn’t any work day. I don’t think a lot of people went into work today,” one commuter said.

Bradley International Airport closed for flights at 7 p.m. Monday until further notice. The Metro-North Railroad was operating on a Sunday schedule. State bus service is set to resume Wednesday morning.

Plow truck driver Larry Messier, 60, dealt with 3-foot snow drifts Tuesday morning as he tried to drive from Columbia to Lebanon in eastern Connecticut. “My plow was hitting it. It was covering my windshield, and I stopped,” he said. “It was bad.”

As he was out plowing driveways, he said the snow was failing so quickly that a road that had been freshly plowed at 3 a.m. had about 8 inches of snow on it by daybreak.

“At 4 o’clock this morning, it was the worst I’ve ever seen it,” he said. “You could plow, and then five minutes later you’d have to plow again.”

Burnie Thompson, 18, spent Tuesday morning making snowmobile trails with friends on the fields behind his home in Mansfield. He usually works at his family’s feed and supply store, but it was closed because of the weather.

“We got out and shoveled a path to our horses and fed the horses, and then we hopped on the snowmobiles and made our way through the powder,” he said. “It is pretty rough riding, mostly deep powder, so it was pretty hard to get around on the snowmobiles.”

With the snow still blowing sideways, Yasser Sheriff, 42, was one of the only people outdoors Tuesday morning in his South Windsor neighborhood, clearing his driveway with a snow blower. He said he wanted to get it done before going inside to work from home for the day. “I’ve finished round one,” he said, looking over his freshly cleared driveway. “We’ll see what comes later today.” He said the storm that had dropped about a foot of snow locally so far was not as bad as he expected.

Schools across the state were closed Tuesday. The University of Connecticut canceled classes Monday afternoon and Tuesday, a board of trustees meeting Wednesday and a men’s hockey game scheduled in Hartford on Tuesday night. The state Judicial Branch canceled jury duty Tuesday and Wednesday. And the WWE canceled its RAW wrestling event in Hartford on Monday night.

(TM and © Copyright 2015 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2015 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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