HARRISBURG – PennDOT is temporarily reducing the speed limit to 45 mph on all interstates and other multi-lane limited access roads (expressways) in Pennsylvania starting at 8 p.m. on Feb. 1. PennDOT is taking this step to help
increase motorists’ safety as a major ice storm tightens its grip on the commonwealth. In north central counties, the roads included are Interstates 80 and 180, and Route 15 from I-180 at Williamsport to the New York state line.
PennDOT is urging motorists to avoid unnecessary travel during the storm but those who do head out will see speeds reduced to 45 mph on all interstates and expressways. PennDOT also advises motorist to ensure that they have an emergency kit packed in their vehicle and are prepared for the possibility of lengthy delays.
Although PennDOT crews are treating roadways around the clock, the department’s primary goal is to keep roads passable, not completely free of ice and snow. PennDOT will continue to treat roadways throughout the storm until precipitation stops and roads are clear.
Although PennDOT recommends not traveling during winter storms, motorists can check road conditions on more than 2,900 miles of state roads by calling 511 or visiting www.511PA.com, which is free and available 24 hours a
day, provides traffic delay warnings, weather forecasts, average traffic speeds on urban interstates and access to more than 500 traffic cameras. The 511 site also provides easy-to-use, color-coded winter road conditions for all interstates and other routes covered in the 511 reporting network. Regional Twitter alerts are also available on the 511PA Web site.
The Department also asks motorists who do head out to allow plenty of space when driving near plow trucks. Also, for their own safety and the safety of plow operators, motorists should never attempt to pass a truck while it is plowing or
spreading winter materials.
According to PennDOT, a basic emergency kit should include non-perishable food, water, blanket, small shovel and warm clothes. When preparing an emergency kit, motorists should take into account special needs of passengers such as baby food, pet supplies or medications and pack accordingly.
PennDOT also reminds citizens that downloadable materials, including home and car emergency kit checklists and emergency plan templates, are available at www.ReadyPA.org or by calling 1-888-9-READYPA. Citizens can find information about getting involved in local emergency response efforts and
other volunteer opportunities through the Web site or the toll-free line.
For more winter driving tips and information on how PennDOT treats winter storms, visit www.dot.state.pa.us. Follow PennDOT on Twitter at www.twitter.com/PennDOTNews.