Tuesday, January 22, 2019


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Oh Snow, Not Again!
Written by Larry Roeder, Editor

            Less than five days after Mother Nature sent a wicked nor'easter our way, bringing high winds and more than 6 inches of snow to our area, another storm was predicted for Wednesday.

            This time around, the high winds are expected to be replaced by 8-12 inches, with some areas reaching as high as 18 inches of snow.

            Last Friday's storm brought down trees and wires closing many local roads and cutting the power to thousands of residents.  As of Tuesday, some roads were still closed and scores of area residents were still without power.

            The National Weather Service issued a winter storm warning that stretched from eastern Pennsylvania to most of New England, from late Tuesday night into Thursday morning.

            Heavy, wet snow and gusting winds were expected to take down trees already weakened from last week's storm, and bring down power lines adding to the stress for customers who still don't have power due to damage caused by last week's storm.

            Many utility crews were working around-the-clock to restore power.  Downed trees, poles and other storm cleanup were still in progress throughout the region as snow began falling early Wednesday morning.

            Within the Town and Country readership area on Wednesday morning, PP&L reported outages remaining in the vicinity of Macungie and Coopersburg.  Philadelphia Electric Company was reporting that some outages remained in the Marlborough, Lower Salford, Upper Salford, Upper Frederick, and Perkiomen Township areas. Met-Ed still had some power outages in Douglass Township, Montgomery County.

            Local fire companies, emergency medical services, and police were kept busy last Friday during the storm with scores of emergency calls including a structure collapse in Red Hill and a house fire in Salford Township that leveled the dwelling.  No injuries were reported in either.    

            On Tuesday, as winter storm warnings were issued, most schools in the area announced that they would be closed on Wednesday in anticipation of the coming snowstorm.  Gov. Wolf declared a State of Emergency that included Berks, Bucks, Lehigh and Montgomery Counties. 

            According to Wolf, extra personnel will be monitoring the situation at the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency.

            The state of emergency declaration enables the Commonwealth to bypass the time-consuming bidding process to more quickly procure resources as needed and to access federal aid or resources to respond to county and citizen needs.

            In addition, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation announced a ban on certain highways, beginning at midnight on Tuesday, for empty straight trucks, large combination vehicles (tandem trailers and double trailers), tractors hauling empty trailers, trailers pulled by passenger vehicles, motorcycles and recreational vehicles, or RVs, on: Interstate 78 from the junction with Interstate 81 in Lebanon County to the New Jersey line; I-80 from the junction with Interstate 81 to the New Jersey line; I-81 from the Maryland line to the New York State line; I-84 from the junction with Interstate 81 to the New York State line; and I-380 from the junction with Interstate 80 to the junction with Interstate 81.

            Also, the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission will prohibit these vehicles from traveling the northeastern extension between the Lehigh Tunnel and Clarks Summit.

            Restrictions will remain in place as long as warranted through the storm. As conditions developed, speed restrictions and wider truck and vehicle bans were to be considered on these routes.

            Montgomery County officials declared a State of Emergency on Tuesday as well.  County courts and offices in Berks, Bucks, and Montgomery County were closed on Wednesday.





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