Snow keeps road crews busy around Bradford County
With numerous event cancellations and heavy snowfall this week, it finally feels like winter in Bradford County. In the beginning of the month, December saw temperatures as high as the low 60s.
Some felt cooler weather may never come.
Area municipalities still have snow removal teams out in full force as secondary roads have been battered since the main storm hit Wednesday. With the extra accumulation, area workers from Bradford and Sullivan counties will continue to address the bad weather.
According to the National Weather Service (NWS), by noon Saturday a total of three to seven inches were expected, although many areas seemed to have a more significant total. For Sunday, the NWS expects additional precipitation of up to a half inch.
From the beginning of the storm on Wednesday through Sunday, the NWS has reported well over a foot of snow in the county.
During the Wednesday night storm, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation reduced speed limits on freeways from 65 mph to 45 mph. PennDOT urged residents to stay inside and not travel on roads Saturday, noting that its job is to keep roads passable, not completely void of snow and ice.
Corporal Kowalczyk of the Pennsylvania State Police in Towanda reported an increase of motor vehicle accidents since the storm hit Wednesday. With the extra snow fall Saturday morning, Kowalczyk noted "Nothing major has happened yet," but said the station is "ready for anything."
It's not just road traffic that the storm is affecting, but air traffic as well. The Elmira-Corning Regional Airport in Elmira, N.Y. had two flights from Detroit cancelled Saturday as the second wave of the blizzard came in. Countless other flights were delayed as crews struggled to keep the airport fully operational.
Heather Blokzyl, airport manager at the Bradford County Airport in Towanda, said the airport was being cleared of snow as crews worked to clear the runway Saturday morning. She also noted that while the weather was far from ideal, the airport was open and there were no restrictions on inbound planes. Weather like this is very tough for the airport, according to Blokzyl, and she wanted to personally thank everyone who worked hard to keep the runway operational.
"My volunteers and staff are fantastic and they do a great job," Blokzyl said.
Looking to the future, the NWS is forecasting a slight chance of snow on the night of New Year's Eve and New Year's Day as well.