Christine Stuart photo

(Updated 6 p.m.) Gov. Dannel P. Malloy warned residents Monday that the storm headed for the state has the potential to be the largest winter storm the state has seen since February 2013.

With 22 to 32 inches of snow predicted, and “snow drifts that could accumulate to more than four feet in some places,” Malloy issued a travel ban for all vehicles starting at 9 p.m. Monday evening. The travel ban will remain in place until he feels it’s safe to lift.

“We encourage citizens to stay in place for the duration of the storm,” Malloy said.

He said it will take time to clear all roads for safe travel.

There will be additional Metro-North train services offered Monday between 1 and 5 p.m. and CT Transit bus service will end at 8 p.m. Monday. 

As far as power is concerned, Malloy said Connecticut Light & Power and United Illuminating, the state’s two largest electric companies, have additional crews traveling to the state Monday to help out in the event there are widespread power outages.

In October 2011, CL&P failed to get additional crews to the state before the storm hit and more than 800,000 of its 1.25 million customers lost power.

Malloy said CL&P is preparing for a maximum of 110,000 customers to lose power. With respect to United Illuminating it’s preparing for about 10,000 customers to lose power, Malloy said.

However, he cautioned that those estimates can change very dramatically “because we don’t know what the weight of the snow is.” The amount of snow is also a factor. He said it’s unclear how many inches the state will get and how high the winds will get.

“I think it’s important to note that if you’re without power, you are going to be without power for a period of time,” Malloy said. “In all likelihood, several days.”

Malloy also asked for the public’s patience in clearing the roads.

With the amount of snow being predicted, 22 inches to three feet of snow, “it would be almost impossible to recover overnight,” Malloy said.

At a 5 p.m. press conference Monday, Malloy told all first and second shift state employees to stay home on Tuesday. He also issued a travel ban and declared a state of emergency.

“If the snowfall and the wind conditions match what is being predicted it will take us a period of time as a state to recover from that,” Malloy said.

He encouraged private employees to allow their employees to work from home on Tuesday.

“Make no mistake, this storm has the potential to be extremely powerful and dangerous so do not take this storm lightly,” Malloy warned.

Malloy will brief the public on the storm at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday morning.