PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – The latest round of winter weather to hit western Pennsylvania had a big impact on the morning commute.
This was especially true for areas north of Pittsburgh.
Lisa Washington’s Report:
Large snowflakes quickly accumulated on Route 65 in Beaver County and it didn’t take long before you could no longer see the highway.
PennDOT quickly lowered the speed limit to 45 mph on many area highways because of the storm.
While it took commuters longer to get to work, it was also a long morning for salt truck and snowplow drivers, with so many streets needing to be treated.
“It was really slick. It was amazing because normally the roads that are taken care of are plowed and salted, a lot of them weren’t even touched,” Rich Wilson said.
In Butler County, all of the 42 PennDOT salt and plow trucks were on the roads. Crews started their morning earlier than originally planned.
“Actually we brought crews out two hours prior to the storm hitting. We had guys out at 1. They prepped the trucks. They had material loaded and were ready to go,” PennDOT Manager Mike Mattis said.
Just before daylight the snow began to change to a mix of freezing rain and sleet.
In Cranberry Township, drivers traveled slowly on the slushy streets.
Meghan Schiller’s Report:
Conditions In Pittsburgh & Allegheny County
As for Pittsburgh, people battled snow, ice and rain during their morning commute.
“I actually did not have my husband take me to work this morning because I thought the busway is going to be taken care of, the roads may be lagging behind,” Staci Fonner said.
“This is irritating and it’s messy and if you see, the streets are so dirty now,” Ruth Berry said.
“My bus was a little late getting to work so I know it’s going to take some time for me to even get to work,” one man said.
Port Authority buses were stopped in their tracks. Some were forced to take alternate routes to avoid the city’s iciest roads
“They kind of go as far as they can and once they can’t go any farther, they’ll turn, they’ll go off-route, they’ll call in and let the operations facility know and then they’ll let other operators know,” Adam Brandolph, of the Port Authority, said.
The Port Authority will have crews out to monitor conditions throughout the evening commute as well.
Changing precipitation caused a variety of problems. First, it rained before changing to snow and then back to rain again. That left everything coated in slush and ice.
The ice proved heavy for wires along Route 88 in Bethel Park. One utility pole was brought down, which closed the road for most of the morning between Logan Road and Sarah Street.