Drivers Urged to Use Caution, Expect Slow Conditions Late Today, Early Tomorrow

Wind, Arctic Temperatures to Follow in Storm’s Wake

Harrisburg – With weather forecasts calling for a quick-hitting storm late today and through the overnight hours, PennDOT is urging motorists in affected areas to slow down, increase following distance and make smart travel decisions.

Although PennDOT crews will be plowing and treating roadways around the clock if necessary, the department’s primary goal is to keep roads passable, not completely free of ice and snow. PennDOT will continue to treat roadways throughout the storm until precipitation stops and roads are clear.

Motorists are reminded that PennDOT treats interstates and other high-volume expressways first during winter storms, which means secondary state routes are a lower priority and they may have deeper snow accumulations.

Forecasters are predicting high winds will follow the snow, which will lead to drifting snow and reduced visibility in many areas of the state. Motorists need to remain vigilant for snow drifts and be prepared to reduce speeds in areas with reduced visibility.

PennDOT urges motorists not to travel during severe weather, but if they must, they can check road conditions on more than 2,900 miles of state roads by calling 511 or visiting www.511PA.com. 511PA, which is free and available 24 hours a day, provides traffic delay warnings, weather forecasts, average traffic speeds on urban interstates and access to more than 500 traffic cameras. The 511 site also provides easy-to-use, color-coded winter road conditions for all interstates and other routes covered in the 511 reporting network. Regional Twitter alerts are also available on the 511PA website.

PennDOT asks all motorists to allow plenty of space when driving near plow trucks. Also, for their own safety and the safety of plow operators, motorists should never attempt to pass a truck while it is plowing or spreading winter materials.

This weekend, temperatures in many areas of the state are expected to be at or below zero for nighttime lows, while daytime temperatures are expected only to be in the teens and low 20s. For this reason, PennDOT reminds motorists that it’s never too late to pack an emergency kit for their vehicles. A basic kit should include non-perishable food, water, blanket, small shovel and warm clothes. When preparing an emergency kit, motorists should take into account special needs of passengers such as baby food, pet supplies or medications and pack accordingly.

For more winter driving tips and information on how PennDOT treats winter storms, visit www.dot.state.pa.us/winter.


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