Governor Wolf speaks after Ida leaves dozens of Midstate roads underwater

Pennsylvania

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — Governor Tom Wolf joined officials from the PA Emergency Management Agency and PA Department of Transportation Thursday, to provide an update on the state’s response to Ida remnants.

“The remnants of Ida brought historic rainfall to Pennsylvania over the last several days. This was a rare culmination of events that caused record flooding in many places around the commonwealth. Many people across the state are dealing with the aftereffects of the storm today,” Gov. Tom Wolf said.

The Governor spoke at noon Thursday, nearly 24-hours after he previously addressed Pennsylvanians on the state’s response to Ida. Heavy rains prompted evacuations and brought about flooding for much of the Commonwealth.

“We have a long road ahead of us. It will take time to complete damage assessments and make assistance and resources available, but we will continue to share information about assistance as it becomes available in the days and weeks ahead,” Wolf said.

On Wednesday, Wolf was joined by the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency (PEMA), Department of Transportation (PennDOT) and the Pennsylvania State Police (PSP).

As storms cleared, hundreds of roads were left damaged or flooded, affecting traffic conditions for much of the Thursday morning commute.

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In response to the storms, water rescue teams were dispatched to areas expecting significant impacts from the rain and flooding.

“We now need people to stay off the roads unless travel is necessary. If you must travel, do so safely and be aware that conditions can change quickly,” PEMA Director Randy Padfield said.

On Tuesday, Governor Tom Wolf signed an emergency proclamation in anticipation of the widespread flooding. The proclamation allows for emergency preparedness teams to provide any support needed throughout the storm and its aftermath. 

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation is reminding drivers not to drive across roads covered with water because even shallow, swiftly flowing water can wash a car from a roadway.

“We understand that closed roadways and other impacts from the storm can be frustrating,” Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) Acting Executive Deputy Secretary Melissa Batula said. “Even though the rains have stopped, it is still so important that the public remain vigilant, and allow space for our crews and for emergency workers to do their jobs.” 

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