Students and other drivers around the Montclair State University community faced a major traffic jam, lasting more than three hours, due to inclement snowfall Thursday night.
A weather report from nj.com, published on Tuesday, predicted 2 to 4 inches of snow for parts of New Jersey. However, according to the current forecast, snowfall could increase to 8 inches.
Some students on campus were stuck in traffic for 3 hours, trapped on roads like Normal Avenue all the way to Route 46. Freshman biology major Stephanie Barraza left campus after class, but was stuck on Clove Road after sitting in traffic for over 3 hours.
“To have a big car, [my experience] wasn’t as bad as other people’s,” Barraza said. “People in smaller cars, I feel bad for them. Since I’m in an okay car, it’s fine.”
@TheMontclarion Been trying to get on Rt. 46 for about 4 hours now. Valley Rd isn’t plowed causing a lot of stalling on the road. pic.twitter.com/iNavhVhZgJ
— Heather (@HeatherBerzak) November 16, 2018
Barraza believes that the university did not prepare enough for the weather and this resulted in inconvenient conditions.
“I feel like they weren’t prepared for the snowstorm,” Barraza said. “There wasn’t salt on anything, and they barely shoveled.”
The university sent multiple text messages and emails throughout the day following the impending snowstorm. Classes starting at 5:30 p.m. and beyond were canceled. The university also sent a blast at 4:19 p.m. stating that classes currently in session could be “dismissed early at the discretion of the instructor.”
@MontclairPD @montclairstateu @MSUParking @MontclairPatch you seriously need to hurry up clearing out the accidents by Montclair State University. We’ve been waiting in our cars, not moving for an hour. The snow is not stopping, do something and do it now.
— ᴋᴇᴠɪɴ ᴋᴜᴍᴇᴛᴢ (@kevintkumetz) November 15, 2018
Transfer student and film major Elena Potter walked back to Hawk Crossings from Sam’s Place after her work shift at the Student Recreation Center.
“I didn’t know the snow was going to be this bad,” Potter said. “I went to the parking garage with my cousin, and she’s been in the parking garage for 3 hours now.”
Joel Yepez and Victor Aries help push a car past an abandoned vehicle in Lot 24. Yepez’s car is also stuck in the snow, and Aries is a volunteer fire fighter who has been helping move cars since 2 p.m. @TheMontclarion pic.twitter.com/VRquJxrcOc
— kristen (@kmilz32) November 16, 2018
Montclair State University tweeted a traffic update at 5:44 p.m. notifying students that roads and highways are congested and to stay inside until the roads are clear.
MSU TRAFFIC UPDATE:Local roads/highways are congested, causing on-campus backups. U. Police are on site. If you're on campus, remain inside until roads clear. Update to follow. Please be careful and patient.
— Montclair State U (@montclairstateu) November 15, 2018
Some dining options remained open on campus. Red Hawk Diner stayed open until 9 p.m., Sam’s Place until 9:30 p.m. and Blanton Plaza until 10 p.m.
NJ Transit train services were still running but were subject to 60-minute delays system-wide.
NJ TRANSIT train service is subject to up to 60-minute delays system-wide due to weather-related conditions.
NJ Transit bus, rail and light rail tickets and passes are being cross honored system-wide.
— NJ TRANSIT (@NJTRANSIT) November 15, 2018
The NJ Transit Twitter account tweeted updates all day regarding the transportation services.