It’s not even Thanksgiving, and Mainers are already back into the familiar winter routine.

(National Weather Service map)

Snow began falling overnight across the area and is expected to pick up in intensity throughout the day. The snow-covered roads and reduced visibility prompted many schools to cancel school for the second time in less than a week.

The storm is the second of the season in southern Maine and comes a full month before the officials start of winter. While it seems early for a blast of winter, it’s not unheard of for Maine to see a coating of snow before the official start of winter. Portland had already seen 7.3 inches before Tuesday’s storm, putting it in the position to record its 10th snowiest November on record if a total of 12.5 inches falls by the end of the month.

“It’s a little bit out of the ordinary,” said Tom Hawley, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Gray.

The National Weather Service predicts most of southern and central Maine will see 4 to 6 inches by the time the snow tapers off tonight. The rest of the state will see smaller amounts of snow, according to the weather service.

Snow could be heavy at times on Tuesday, with bands of snow producing 1 inch per hour during the middle of the day.

More information: Storm closings

Auburn’s parking ban started at 10 a.m. Tuesday. Lewiston isn’t starting its parking ban until 6 p.m. Tuesday. Both parking bans end at 6 a.m. Wednesday.

The weather service reported 2.7 inches of snow had fallen at its office in Gray by 7:40 a.m. Other early snow totals include 2.2 inches at the Portland International Jetport, 2 inches in Hollis, 1.7 inches in Naples and a half-inch in Scarborough.

Many schools have canceled classes for the day, but Portland and South Portland officials announced that school would be open in those cities. District and superior courts in southern Maine are closed for the day.

The speed limit is reduced to 45 mph for the entire length of the Maine Turnpike.

One lane was closed and traffic was slow near mile 55 southbound on the turnpike in Falmouth around 7:30 a.m. because of a car that slid off the road. State Police were on scene, according to the Maine Turnpike Authority.

This story will be updated.

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