Wintry weather expected in Delaware on busy travel day

The weather forecast is calling for rain and snow on the busiest travel day of the year, the day before Thanksgiving.

The storm is expected to wreak havoc along the East Coast, gripping states along the I-95 corridor.

“The timing of this storm is far from ideal as most people plan to travel to their Thanksgiving feasts on Wednesday,” said Jim Lardear, director of Public and Government Affairs for AAA Mid-Atlantic.

Local forecasts call for the worst conditions to arrive during the evening and nighttime hours on Wednesday. “Travelers will now be facing extremely busy highways coupled with the nasty weather system, a combination that could be frustrating and/or deadly for the ill prepared.”

Lardear warned drivers to heed all travel warnings and advised them to stay home until road conditions improve. 

Early estimates

Ahead of the storm, AAA Mid-Atlantic estimated nearly 126,000 Delawareans would travel 50 miles or more away from home over the holiday weekend, roughly a 4 percent increase over last year.

This year’s Thanksgiving travel was gearing up to be the most crowded since 2007, assuming the estimates hold true. 

“Lower prices are increasing disposable income and enabling families to carve out more money from household budgets for travel this Thanksgiving,” said Lardear, with 90 percent of Delawareans expected to travel by car.

Be prepared

With the majority of travelers expected to hit the road, AAA advised drivers in inclement weather to keep at least a 10 second distance from the car in front of them, use caution on bridges and overpasses, which tend to freeze first and melt last, never use cruise control and pack an emergency roadside kit.

Lardear said the kit should include a flashlight with extra batteries, blankets, booster cables, snacks and a first aid kit.

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