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Ice storm slams Saratoga County

"The clients got food, drinks, a place to sleep and what we call a comfort kit" with items like a toothbrush and toothpaste, said Cheryl Murphy, director of emergency services for the Red Cross chapter.

The Red Cross was also on the scene in Halfmoon, neighbor to Clifton Park and another hard-hit town. Town Hall was home to 57 people on Friday night.

Though not all municipalities declared emergencies, all were affected.

The Town of Ballston opened its town hall as a warming center, and saw many residents from the 1,850 homes that lost power take advantage of it. Many homes in the rural town rely on wells that don't work without electricity.

"It was great to see the community coming together and helping each other," said Supervisor Patti Southworth. She said the town's highway and fire departments performed admirably during the disaster, and that the emergency preparedness committee will be reviewing the weekend's events at their January meeting.

"I think we did fine, but we'll do even better next time," said Southworth.

A snow emergency was declared early on Friday in the city of Saratoga Springs. Except on streets designated for alternate side parking, vehicles standing for more than 12 hours were subject to towing.

The Town of Malta opened the David R. Meager Community Center as a warming shelter for those without the benefit of heat.

Schools across the area were closed on Friday due to lack of power and heat and because of dangerous conditions, but problems persisted after the weekend at a few locations. Malta Avenue Elementary School in the Ballston Spa School District was closed on Monday due to a lack of heat and students were dispersed to the district's three other elementary schools.

Classes on Monday, Dec. 15, were cancelled at the Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake Middle School when problems in the heating system meant that returned power didn't keep the school warm. School was back in session on Tuesday.

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