PennDOT and the Pennsylvania Turnpike have implemented further travel restrictions Monday morning amid the major snowstorm.
As of 9 a.m., no commercial vehicles, as well as school buses, motorcycles, RVs, and trailers, are allowed on the following roads:
· Route 22 from Interstate 78 to the New Jersey border;
· The entire length of Route 33 in both directions;
· The entire length of Interstate 78 in both directions;
· Interstate 80 from Interstate 81 to the New Jersey border;
· The entire length of Interstate 84 in both directions;
· The entire length of Interstate 380 in both directions;
· Interstate 476 (PA Turnpike Northeast Extension) from Interstate 78 (Lehigh Valley Interchange, Exit 56) to Interstate 80 (Pocono Interchange, Exit 95)
The speed limit has been reduced to 45 mph on all major highways and interstates around the area.
State officials are asking people around the region to stay home during the snowstorm and avoid all unnecessary travel.
“As this winter storm continues, the best plan of action is to stay home,” Gov. Wolf said, in a news release Sunday. “If you are required to travel, have all the proper safety precautions in place and stay alert for rapidly changing conditions.”
Motorists can also sign up for alerts on www.511pa.com by clicking on “Personal Alerts” in the left-hand menu.
Officials say, high winds and freezing temperatures are expected during this event, so motorists should be aware of blowing and drifting snow, which can cause icy areas on roadways, including overpasses and bridges. With freezing temperatures, roads that look wet may actually be icy, and extra caution is needed when approaching bridges and highway ramps where ice can form without warning.
Officials warn that drivers should prepare or restock their emergency kits with items such as non-perishable food, water, first-aid supplies, warm clothes, a blanket, cell phone charger and a small snow shovel. Motorists should tailor their kits to any specific needs that they or their families have such as baby supplies, extra medication and pet supplies.
When winter weather occurs, drivers should extra cautious around operating snow-removal equipment. When encountering a plow truck, drivers should:
• Stay at least six car lengths behind an operating plow truck and remember that the main plow is wider than the truck.
• Be alert since plow trucks generally travel much more slowly than other traffic.
• When a plow truck is traveling toward you, move as far away from the center of the road as is safely possible, and remember that snow can obscure the actual snow plow width.
• Never try to pass or get between several trucks plowing side by side in a “plow train.” The weight of the snow thrown from the plow can quickly cause smaller vehicles to lose control, creating a hazard for nearby vehicles.
• Never travel next to a plow truck since there are blind spots where the operator can’t see, and they can occasionally be moved sideways when hitting drifts or heavy snowpack.
• Keep your lights on to help the operator better see your vehicle. Also remember that under Pennsylvania state law, vehicle lights must be on every time a vehicle’s wipers are on due to inclement weather.