Turnpike Authority: We did not do an adequate job clearing the Parkway

     A line of vehicles entering the Garden State Parkway at Exit 109 Friday morning. (Photo: JSHN contributor Rachael Gener)

    A line of vehicles entering the Garden State Parkway at Exit 109 Friday morning. (Photo: JSHN contributor Rachael Gener)

    A New Jersey Turnpike Authority representative apologized for the condition of a portion of the Garden State Parkway this morning that left many in standstill traffic.

    In a release, Turnpike Authority Executive Director Joe Mrozek said his agency will conduct a careful review of this morning’s incident to determine how to best deploy equipment, materials, and manpower.  

    “We did not do an adequate job of clearing snow and ice on the Garden State Parkway between the Driscoll Bridge and the Asbury Park Toll Plaza during this morning’s commute,” Mrozek said.

    Commuters said the conditions on the highway between southern Monmouth County and the Driscoll Bridge in southern Middlesex County were dangerous, causing miles of delays.

    “Been driving the Parkway for 29 years. By far the worst driving conditions for this far after the storm,” commented Roger Kroeger on JSHN. “No salt put down AT ALL from at least the Driscoll Bridge south to Asbury Park Toll. All you see is plows rolling over solid ice.”

    Around 8:15 a.m., Frank Ebel commented on JSHN that the local lanes were “at a standstill” between exits 105 and 114. “Standstill. Not crawling. People out of cars talking to other people,” he said. 

    In addition to Kroeger and Ebel, well over 100 commuters commented about the situation on JSHN

    Mrozek said that the bitterly cold temperatures and motor vehicle accidents compounded the problems, which occurred in an area that has historically been “a difficult section of the Parkway to keep clear during winter storms.”

    “Salt is less effective in extreme cold. A series of accidents in the area caused further complications,” he said, adding that plows had trouble getting through traffic to spots that needed attention.

    Mrozek said that the agency had salt this morning – albeit a low supply — and is expecting additional shipments of salt today and through the weekend. 

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