PEMA monitors winter storm, focusing on eastern Pennsylvania


HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — Central Pennsylvania may have missed the brunt of the storm, but it did have a significant impact on the eastern part of the state where people are still digging out from last week’s storm.

The best for central Pennsylvania was seeing a little more than rain on Wednesday, but Gov. Tom Wolf says in areas east, snow was falling at a rate of one to two inches per hour.

“We’re doing everything we can to support communities, assist citizens and first responders, and most importantly, we want to keep people safe,” said Wolf.

PennDOT lowered the speed limit on several interstates in the area, even imposing a ban on some large trucks. Transportation Secretary Leslie Richards says safety was a top priority.

“We want to make sure that everyone’s safe, and where speeds need to be lowered they’re lowered, and to keep the traveling public as safe as possible,” said Richards.

About 450 Pennsylvania National Guard members were on standby for deployment to eastern areas of the state.

Wednesday’s storm comes days after several communities in eastern and northeastern Pennsylvania saw as much as two feet of snow. Almost 40,000 people were still without power.

PEMA Director Rick Flinn says it is concentrating on getting communities back to normal.

“We’re focused on continuing to get power restored, get roads open, and get communities back to normal from last week’s storm. And this storm simply complicates that effort that’s underway,” said Flinn.

The National Guard is in nine counties and will continue to provide assistance until they are no longer needed.

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