Mayor Walsh, officials, address storm as city prepares to shut down

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Mayor Walsh, officials, address storm as city prepares to shut down

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By Brigitte Carreiro and Melissa Hanson

Mayor Martin J. Walsh on Monday afternoon addressed concerns regarding the imminent snowstorm expected to pile upwards of 2 feet of snow on the city and greater Boston.

Walsh said he was confident in the city’s abilities to handle the storm and listed some precautions that are to be taken in the next two days.

“We’ve been in a blizzard before and we’re confident that we’re prepared,” he said.

Walsh announced a city-wide parking ban that will take effect beginning at 6 p.m. Monday. A two-hour gap will be allowed for residents to move their cars, and any left on the major roadways as of 8 p.m. will be towed in order to allow snow plows to move throughout the city. “People should not be driving in the city of Boston,” Walsh said sternly during a press conference at City Hall. “People need to take this forecast seriously.”

Officials from city departments addressed the media on each of their roles in the storm.

Public works plans to have 800 snow removal machines in use through the storm, according to Public Works Interim Commissioner Mike Dennehy.

“Overnight is going to be a monumental task,” he said of snow removal, noting that snow is supposed to accumulate by the hour.

Dennehy detailed his plans for snow removal, and said that 250 sanders were out very early in the day on Monday for the evening commute and that he plans to get equipment out as soon as possible. “Getting equipment out early will give us an advantage,” he said.

The Boston Public Health Commission will be working with shelter communities to ensure that no homeless person is left out in this storm.

Police Commissioner William Evans said his department plans to work with the Pine Street Inn and other shelters to keep the homeless safe through the duration of the storm.

“If we see someones life is in danger, we will take them in,” said Evans.

Boston police and EMS will have extra patrols on the road to ensure the safety of residents.

Fire Commissioner Joseph Finn urged residents to clear snow from fire hydrants.

“That could be the difference between life and death,” he said.

Boston Public Schools will be closed tomorrow as well as Wednesday, according to Walsh, to allow parents ample time to make arrangements for their children’s well-being. “We are prioritizing our children’s safety,” he said.

Earlier Monday, Governor Charlie Baker announced that the MBTA would be shut down on Tuesday.

Nearly two years ago, winter storm Nemo piled snow across the city.

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