The Greater New Milford area is still digging out from the first major snowstorm of the young winter -- officially the state's first blizzard since 1982.

We thank those who acted with caution and consideration, and we remind everyone that, while winter weather can be a lot of fun, it's also serious business.

There was nothing anyone could do about the snow and wind that conspired to blanket the area with deep drifts on Sunday and Monday.

For the most part, people made the best of what had been dealt them, whether that meant town and state crews plowing roads or motorists driving with caution -- better yet, staying off the road -- to allow the professionals to do their work.

There were complications: CL&P said widespread power outages in New Milford, Sherman, Bridgewater and Kent were the fault of malfunctioning equipment, and the storm caused scattered outages in other area towns.

The storm that stretched into Monday might prove to be this winter's worst. It might be decades before residents encounter another Connecticut storm that meets the wind/snow/visibility criteria to be called a blizzard.

But one never knows.

Area towns will have to be judicious with snow removal -- while still maintaining the public safety -- having in some cases exceeded half their annual storm budgets on this single event.

We encourage businesses to be thorough in clearing their sidewalks.

We urge motorists to obey snow-emergency regulations -- even to move cars off the street in advance of an official announcement -- and to drive with caution, not only with regard to other vehicles on the road, but also out of concern for pedestrians.

Being careful out there should always be a winter priority, even in much lesser snowstorms than this one. And the season's just getting started.