With Pennsylvania and the East Coast facing a double-barreled snow event, Governor Tom Wolf met with regional PennDOT executives and equipment operators Sunday to review preparations.
Wolf met with District Executive Mike Keiser, Assistant District Executive for Maintenance Mike Rock, and York County Maintenance Manager Mike Martin at the salt stockpile in Yocumtown. The Governor also greeted equipment operators and looked at the equipment and received an update on preparations.
“I came to Yocumtown to visit with the people out on the front lines,” Wolf said. “These are the folks who are out there making sure our roads are as clear and as clean as possible. I urge people to exercise caution over the next few days and to stay off the roads in areas affected by bad weather.”
PennDOT storm managers have been reviewing weather forecasts and assembling crews from the ranks of the agency’s 5,400 equipment operators, who will be working shifts 24-7 during the duration of the winter weather.
“We have been loading salt and starting our patrols and we are ready for these events,” Keiser said.
PennDOT has 2,250 trucks, 235 rental trucks and 200 trucks on standby across the state to respond to the weather. Going into the weekend, PennDOT had more than 600,000 tons of salt on hand. So far this winter, PennDOT said it has used 350,000 tons and is running slightly lower than the five-year average winter usage. PennDOT estimates it has enough salt reserves to handle roughly 18 to 20 storms.
Keiser noted that snow is forecast to be falling through the morning commute, which promises to make travel challenging. Long-distance travelers should consider delaying their plans until after the winter weather passes. Traffic on roadways hinders PennDOT snow plows from doing their jobs.
Drivers can see road conditions and other real time travel information by dialing 511 or visiting www.511PA.com. 511PA is also available through a smartphone application for IPhoine and Android devices.