Update: Intense storm dumps snow, knocks out power, upends most voting


Monitor staff

Published: 03-14-2023 2:35 PM

A day of heavy, wet snow postponed most traditional town meeting activities in central and western New Hampshire, including ballot voting, on Tuesday. Most, but not all.

In Boscawen, Loren Martin and Gary Tillman, two candidates for the open seat on the Select Board, were out in front of the library Tuesday morning to greet voters.

“It’s been a little slow,” Martin said. “I’d like to see a little bit more turnout … but the weather is definitely keeping people away.”

“It’s a little crazy” to be out in the weather, she admitted, “but I think it’s an important role in local government to be part of the process.”

Tillman said he wasn’t going to let the heavy wet snow keep him home even if he is a transplant from Tennessee.

“I mainly just want to serve the town and the people in town by trying to make sure everything goes smoothly and we keep quality of life the way it is now,” he said.

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In Londonderry, Moderator Jonathan Kipp said some diehard residents were braving the elements to vote in person Tuesday morning.

“Some are like, ‘Hey, this is New England, you know, what do you expect?’ And others are not happy with the decision, but they still came out,” he told the Associated Press.

About half the towns in the Concord area postponed Tuesday’s voting, although people could vote by absentee ballot on Monday. Virtually all towns that had traditional town meeting scheduled for Tuesday also postponed it; officials in Dunbarton were debating Tuesday morning whether to go ahead.

The legislator gave moderators the option to delay sessions after a huge storm in 2017 snarled town meeting day without any legal way to move the dates.

The storm’s path included most of New England, upstate New York, northeastern Pennsylvania and northern New Jersey.

Tens of thousands of customers were without electricity at various times Tuesday as the heavy, wet snow brought down tree limbs onto power lines.

Accumulation was expected to vary from a few inches closer to the Seacoast to as much as two feet in higher elevations in the southwestern part of the state.

More than 400 flights traveling to, from or within the U.S. were canceled Tuesday, with Boston and New York City area airports seeing the highest number of scrubbed flights, according to the flight tracking websiteFlightAware. A Delta Air Lines plane veered off a paved surface as it taxied for takeoff from a Syracuse, New York, airport Tuesday morning. No one was injured and the airport remained open.

While higher elevations get snow, authorities warned residents in coastal areas to watch for possible flooding because of heavy rains. The National Weather Service in New York said wind gusts could reach 50 mph across Long Island and lower Connecticut.

The Associated Press contributed to this article