Harford County Public Schools announced just before 6 p.m. Wednesday that they will be closed Thursday. The closure follows an early dismissal Tuesday and an all day closure Wednesday, which triggers students going to school next week on a day not originally scheduled.
According to the school system's web posting: "As a reminder, as noted in the HCPS calendar, tomorrow's inclement weather closure will result in school's being open to staff AND students on Wednesday, March 28, 2018."
March 28 was originally a professional day for teachers.
The arrival of spring early Tuesday afternoon received a not-so-warm welcome from the departing season, as Harford County was hit by a combination of rain, freezing rain, sleet and snow, with the possibility of more unseasonable weather to follow.
Harford County Public Schools announced at about 6:38 p.m. Tuesday, after closing early today, they would be closed Wednesday.
Harford County Public Schools closed two hours early Tuesday because of the latest round of winter weather, the school system posted on its website at 10:13 a.m. All after-school and evening activities were canceled.
Prior to Tuesday, Harford public schools had missed five days this school year because of inclement weather, according to the HCPS website. Schools opened 2 hours late on five days and closed early three days besides Tuesday.
Harford’s public libraries also closed early Tuesday, with branches in Jarrettsville, Norrisville and Whiteford closing at 12:30 p.m., and other branches closing at 5 p.m. instead of the normal 8 p.m., according to an announcement.
Maryland State Police at the Bel Air Barrack announced a snow emergency was in effect for the county as of about 2:30 p.m. Tuesday.
The National Weather Service forecast, as of 3 p.m. Tuesday, warned that several inches of snow could fall over the greater Bel Air area between late Tuesday night and Wednesday evening, with accumulations of 1 to 3 inches overnight and additional 3 to 7 inches during the day.
Overnight temperatures Tuesday were expected in the high 20s, according to the NWS forecast. Spring officially arrived at 12:15 p.m.
The lingering winter weather caused slippery conditions on local roads throughout the day on Tuesday; however, no serious accidents were reported by police or on the Harford County Volunteer Fire & EMS Association or the Harford Fire Blog pages on Facebook.
Harford County government posted on its social media accounts advice to residents on how to keep safe with the impending snowfall:
“If possible, please restrict your travel, do not park in the street and refrain from clearing your driveway and sidewalk until after the plows have cleared the road from curb to curb.
“If you must park in the street, please park on the odd numbered side, as close to the curb as possible, until the opposite side is cleared. Then move your vehicle to the cleared side.
“Please take your time when shoveling this snow which may be especially wet and heavy. We had a number of cardiac arrests during Winter Storm Jonas and we want citizens to be safe; these calls also put emergency vehicles on the road in what may be unsafe conditions.”
“If you cannot avoid travel, please make sure that your cell phone is fully charged, and you have an emergency kit for your vehicle. Include blankets, a small shovel, kitty litter or sand for traction, extra clothing, flashlight, snacks, and water in case you are stranded. Let friends or family know of your travel route and expected arrival time.
“Check on friends, neighbors, and relatives, especially the elderly or vulnerable citizens who may have trouble staying warm or maneuvering on icy surfaces.”
Additional information can be found on the county website at www.harfordcountymd.gov, on the Facebook pages for Harford County Government and the Harford County Department of Emergency Services, and on Twitter @harfordcountymd.gov and @HarfordCoDES.
This story will be updated.