LEWISTON — By Maine standards, it was an average January storm. Six inches of snow fell across the Lewiston region while other areas got slightly less or slightly more. Between 5 and 8 inches were reported just about everywhere.
Nonetheless, more than 200 schools and businesses were closed as the latest storm barged through the state. Some businesses never opened while others sent workers home early. The state sent all of its employees home at 3 p.m.
In Gray, a tractor-trailer slid off the interstate, causing other cars to skid out of control. The wreck snarled traffic, but no injuries were reported.
Most cities and towns imposed parking bans as crews went about clearing streets and side roads. In the Lewiston-Auburn area, the storm blew on through the lunch hour, with snow swirling in winds that gusted up to 35 mph. By 3 p.m., it was over. The clouds parted and blue skies appeared.
Once more, fresh snow meant elation for skiers.
"Well Sugarloafers, you asked for it," declared the message on the Sugarloaf Mountain Resort website. "Snow! I have yet another powder day under my belt for this season. Today was absolutely amazing."
"Here’s the scoop," trumpeted the message at Sunday River Ski Resort. "It’s Friday afternoon and it’s snowing — no, rather dumping. Three inches have fallen since last night and, in the last nine days alone, we’ve received 30 inches of new snow and the number keeps climbing."
Temperatures are expected to dive over the weekend, thanks to an arctic blast. Forecasters say that on Saturday, temperatures won't rise out of the teens and may drop well below zero by early next week.