WESTFIELD, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — A state of emergency Friday in New Jersey has been lifted after a significant winter storm caused a messy morning commute.

North Jersey residents woke up to snow-covered cars, unplowed local streets, tree branches lightly coated and sunshine. The sun helped melt things quickly.

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As CBS2’s Meg Baker reports, some people ventured out in Union County to explore, and some dogs got involved too, zooming in the powder.

A few inches of snow didn’t stop one woman from her morning walk in Scotch Plains. The snow was a light consistency, making it easier to shovel.

In neighboring Essex County, officials said the storm came at a perfect time – overnight – so there were no cars out on the roads, making it easier to clear.

Communities prepared overnight. The Essex County Department of Public Safety said it had more than 200 trucks out to make sure roads are clear.

“We did have enough notice. We were prepared. I think our Essex County Public Works Department did a tremendous job at clearing the snow,” said Essex County Executive Joe DiVincenzo.

The morning commute was light. Many schools were closed and state offices had a delayed opening.

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“Four accidents other than that, and three or four tows, and that’s basically it. So we escaped pretty nicely, but we were prepared,” said Essex County Sheriff Armando Fontoura.

In Elizabeth, there was fun to be had.

“I love the snow,” one child said.

“I love snow, but I’d rather be in the heat,” another person said.

“The conditions were great, but the snow is a little late. Where was this on Christmas?” said another person.

Most of the snow has melted off the black top. The concern now is freezing and black ice.

Check the latest forecast.

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Meg Baker contributed to this report. 

Natalie Duddridge