Transportation frozen as blizzard intensifies

    Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell has ordered most major roads closed and state troopers will order drivers off them. That includes the Vine Street and the Schuylkill expressways. The airport is closed and public transit is grinding to a halt in many areas.

    Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell has ordered most major roads closed and state troopers will order drivers off them. Septa has curtailed service, and Philadelphia public  and parochial schools will close on Thursday.

    Rendell has shut down the Schuylkill Expressway, I-476 and I-676 in the Philadelphia area, and I-176 between Morgantown and Reading.

    Travel on all of I-83, I-78 and I-81 from the Maryland border up to I-80 is banned until further notice, due to hazardous driving conditions.

    • WHYY thanks our sponsors — become a WHYY sponsor

    The governor says the decision has more to do with visibility and wind than snow accumulation.

    Rendell: These road closures were necessitated by the high winds, which created a real lack of visibility. Something that despite the intensity of the storm over the weekend, we didn’t have to deal with.

    The Pennsylvania Turnpike remains open, but the speed limit has been reduced to 45 miles per hour, and certain types of vehicles are banned from driving on it.

    I-95 is still open, as well.

    About 1,100 members of the Pennsylvania National Guard have been mobilized to help state police and PennDOT workers patrol the roads and assist stranded motorists.

    SEPTA has cancelled all bus service, and there are delays on trolley and rail lines. The number 15 trolley is discontinued as of 5 p.m. and the number 100 Norristown line  is down.

    There are significant delays on the R7 Chestnut Hill East and Trenton lines, the R5 Paoili and the R1 Airport line. the R2 to Wilmington is stopping at Marcus Hook.

    Officials say the Broad Street Subway and the Market Frankford El will run throughout the storm.

    but trolley and train routes are operational — with delays — for now.

    PATCO trains are running, with delays, to New Jersey.

    The city of Philadelphia shuttered many government services today, along with Philadelphia public and Archdiocesan schools. It’s unclear when schools and offices will open again.

    New Jersey also closed state offices.

    In addition, PECO is reporting nearly 10,000 outages throughout the region. PECO Spokesman Michael Wood says they’re concentrated in Delaware and Chester counties.

    In New Jersey, Camden, Burlington, and Gloucester counties are among those under Governor Christie’s declared State of Emergency. That will begin the process of receiving federal aid for cleanup and emergency response.

    Non-essential city services will be closed today, as will Philadelphia Traffic, Municipal, and Common Pleas courts are closed today, along with U.S. District Court.
    Nearly all flights at Philadelphia’s airport have been canceled through Thursday morning.  You can check flight status by calling 800-PHL-GATE, or online at

    The state of Delaware is under a snow emergency.  Governor Jack Markell implemented the order at midnight.  It remains in effect until further notice.  It basically orders everyone, but emergency crews, to stay off the road.  Schools and businesses throughout the state are closed.

    Weather Links:

    SEPTA Travel Detours and Alert
    New Jersey Transit Advisories
    Philadelphia Airport
    Pennsylvania Traffic Cams and Road Conditions
    School Closings

    WHYY is your source for fact-based, in-depth journalism and information. As a nonprofit organization, we rely on financial support from readers like you. Please give today.

    Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

    Together we can reach 100% of WHYY’s fiscal year goal