Gov. Phil Murphy says a state of emergency will go into effect ahead of a new storm expected to hit NewJersey.

Murphy said at a news conference that the declaration goes into effect at 8 p.m.

Wednesday's storm comes with more than 40,000 utility customers still without power following last week's nor'easter.

Murphy said the new storm will likely result in a new round of outages.

Hundreds of crews continued to work Tuesday to clear trees and repair power lines. But officials said some customers affected by that storm may not have their service restored until at least Wednesday.

Stay home

Murphy said residents should stay home if they can to allow crews to clear the roads.

“Please do not venture out onto the roads during the storm," Murphy said Tuesday. “We don’t want folks to panic but on the other hand prudency, responsibility, smart common sense are the words of the day.”

He said if you do have to go out into the storm, “Please exercise extreme caution, and be careful in particular of any trees or power lines that may have been weakened by last weekend’s nor’easter.”

“New Jerseyans are tough bunch and we’ll get through whatever gets thrown our way together, and we will get through this safely.”

What is a state of emergency?

A state of emergency does not mean drivers have to stay off the roads. According to the state Office of Emergency Management, schools are not automatically closed. Travel may be restricted to certain areas but a complete travel ban is rarely implemented.

The declaration speeds up assistance from state agencies and “authorizes the NJ director of Emergency Management to makes resources available for rescue, evacuation, shelter and essential commodities activate and coordinate the preparation, response and recovery efforts for the storm with all county and municipal emergency operations and governmental agencies," according to the state Office of Emergency Management.

The latest forecast

As of Tuesday afternoon, the storm was expected to drop several inches of snow across most of the state on Wednesday.

"The Wednesday morning commute could get a bit messy, but overall travel conditions should be OK," New Jersey 101.5 Meteorologist Dan Zarrow said. "From late morning to early evening Wednesday, all bets are off as snow, sleet, and rain pour from the sky."

Follow Zarrow's weather blog and Twitter and Facebook accounts to stay in the know.

School closings

Bookmark our closings page and check it Tuesday night and Wednesday morning for the latest updates.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.