Gov. Wolf signs winter weather emergency proclamation for Pennsylvania ahead of Wednesday snowstorm


FILE – In this May 29, 2020, file photo, Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf meets with the media at The Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency (PEMA) headquarters in Harrisburg, Pa. On Wednesday, Aug. 26, 2020, the Justice Department sent letters to the governors of Pennsylvania and three other Democratic-led states, seeking data on whether they violated federal law by ordering public nursing homes to accept recovering COVID-19 patients from hospitals, actions that have been criticized for potentially fueling the spread of the virus. (Joe Hermitt/The Patriot-News via AP, File)

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — Governor Wolf signed a proclamation of disaster emergency Tuesday ahead of Wednesday’s expected snowstorm.

The emergency proclamation authorizes state agencies to use all available resources and personnel, as necessary, to cope with the magnitude and severity of this emergency situation. In addition, emergency procurement procedures are authorized for purchasing supplies or services to aid emergency response.

“Currently, models predict that the first significant winter storm in nearly a year will hit Pennsylvania tomorrow,” Gov. Wolf said during a virtual press conference Tuesday. “The commonwealth’s emergency preparedness teams have spent a great deal of time and energy over the last several months supporting efforts to mitigate the COVID-19 pandemic and help the commonwealth weather this public health emergency and ensure vaccines are delivered as planned. This proclamation makes it easier for all of those involved in vaccine delivery and keeping people safe to do their jobs.”

The proclamation does not restrict vehicular travel on Pennsylvania roads, but PennDOT and the Pennsylvania Turnpike will be announcing speed and travel restrictions.

If you must travel, slow down and increase your following distance. Most collisions in snowy and icy conditions are the result of driving too fast for the conditions or following too closely. Four-wheel drive may help with driving in the snow, but it does nothing to help with stopping, so leave plenty of room. And remember, speed limits are designed for ideal conditions. Drivers can be cited for driving too fast for the conditions, even below the speed limit.

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