Philly region spared the worst of the snowstorm

Rock salt used in Philadelphia. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

Rock salt used in Philadelphia. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

Updated 5:50 a.am EST

The Philadelphia region and near-in suburbs were spared the worst of Sunday night’s snowstorm.  Much of the heavy snow fell in the Berks County and Lehigh area with the snow turning to rain and slush in other places. South Jersey got under two inches of snow while the Shore communities saw little or no snow at all.  The same for most of Delaware.

Philadelphia schools are on a two hour delay.  The Archdiocese has closed all of its schools throughout the region.

Travel is difficult in many places with roads slick or filled with slush.

Amtrak is on a modified schedule and Septa will run on a Saturday schedule throughout the day.

 

Updated: 8:10 p.m. EST

New Jersey has declared a state of emergency and transit agencies have adjusted schedules amid a winter storm expected to dump up to eight inches of snow on the Philadelphia region overnight.

New Jersey officials said that while high winds are not a major factor in this storm, they are concerned the four to eight inches of heavy, wet snow expected could result in downed wires and power loss in counties across the state.

“The heavy, wet snow is a problem,” New Jersey Board of Public Utilities President Joe Fiordaliso said in a phone press conference earlier Sunday. “It leans on the wires. It leans on the branches of the trees, which could come down which could obviously affect the wires.”

Fiordaliso said all of the state’s utilities have repair crews standing by.

Rain and snow moved into northern Delaware, southeastern Pennsylvania, and South Jersey around 3 p.m. Sunday, changing to heavy snowfall, which could fall at a rate of of up to an inch per hour through 11 p.m., according to the National Weather Service.

Counties in South Jersey are likely to see a wintry mix of rain and sleet, while the area near Trenton could see between five and six inches of snow, state officials said.

While the snow is expected to stop falling before the Monday morning commute, the National Weather Service warns traveling could still be difficult, especially in communities along the I-95 corridor.

“Our main concern is with tomorrow morning’s commute,” Murphy said, urging residents to consider telecommuting on Monday morning.

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation and Pennsylvania Turnpike announced restrictions on commercial vehicles, including a full commercial ban including buses on interstates 78 and 80 from I-81 to the New Jersey line and on a number of other roadways. Other commercial vehicle restrictions were issued on the turnpike and other interstates and highways.

SEPTA regional rail will run on a Saturday schedule on Monday.

Amtrak’s Keystone service between New York and Harrisburg and Pennsylvanian service between New York and Pittsburgh are already operating on a modified schedule Sunday and Monday. Amtrak has also canceled some trains, including Pennsylvanian train 43 on Sunday. Northeast Corridor service between Boston and Washington, D.C. is continuing as scheduled.

Some municipalities declared snow emergencies, requiring drivers to remove vehicles from streets or designated snow emergency routes and in some cases to have all-weather tires or chains on tires before setting off.

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