Wednesday, February 10, 2010
Traveling by car is once again difficult in Southwestern Pennsylvania. City crews have been working on main arteries but have been falling behind in some instances. Roads throughout the city are snow covered. Penn DOT Spokesperson Jim Struzzi says the snow has intensified this morning and the speed limit on all three parkways and I-79 from roughly mile marker 51 to mile marker 82 has been lowered to 45 MPH. The Turnpike has done the same and has taken the additional step of banning oversize trucks, double and triple rigs, recreational vehicles and trailers pulled by passenger vehicles. Struzzi says motorists should be extremely careful on the on and off ramps. He says crews are concentrating on the highways and will not be able to turn their attention to the ramps until the snow slows. Penn DOT is again asking tractor-trailer drivers to remove snow and ice from the roofs of their truck trailers before entering the Fort Pitt and Squirrel Hill tunnels. The trucks can be stopped, turned around and ticketed. Last night the city and the state reached a deal to allow state crews to plow 10 state routes that pass through the city. Pittsburgh is paid by Penn DOT to maintain those roads in normal conditions but state crews will treat the roads until the current snow emergency has been lifted. Blowing snow is now starting to cause problems throughout the region.
The port Authority of Allegheny County says the “T” is up and running except for the 52 Allentown line which remains snow covered. PAT has about 90% of its routes operating but some are being detoured. The Authority is keeping an eye on the deteriorating conditions and will make route changes as needed. Those changes will be posted on their website. Riders are told to expect delays.
About 2,300 Duquesne Light customers are still without power.
Pittsburgh International has two runways open and flights are arriving and departing with little or no delay. However, many flights in and out of Pittsburgh have been canceled due to problems at other airports from the Mississippi to the Atlantic.
*** UPDATE ***
Penn DOT has now placed the same bans on larger vehicles that the Turnpike instituted earlier.