Gov. Wolf declares state of emergency ahead of Winter Storm Harper

Gov. Tom Wolf declares state of emergency.


Winter Storm Harper Could Drop 40 Inches of Snow on the Northeast. Photo Credit: (MGN Online)

Gage Goulding

Jonathan Hanna, Contributor

HARRISBURG — With the potential for an intense winter storm this weekend, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf has declared a state of emergency.

This weekend, snow could fall at a rate of 1-2 inches per hour, and Gov. Wolf said his top concern is safety.

“Our top concern is the safety of residents,” said Wolf. “Postpone travel if you can, and be aware of changing conditions.”

A commercial vehicle ban will also be in place between noon Saturday and noon Sunday on all interstates and the Pa. Turnpike, except for Interstate 95 in southeastern Pennsylvania. The ban will also be imposed on the U.S. 22 expressway in the Lehigh Valley and the Pennsylvania Route 33 expressway in Northampton and Monroe counties.

Speed limits will also be restricted to 45 m.p.h. on interstates and expressways as the storm progresses, and Amtrak has already canceled the cross-state Pennsylvanian passenger train for Sunday and has canceled six trains Sunday on the Keystone Line between Philadelphia and Harrisburg.

PennDOT secretary Leslie S. Richards said, “Travel will be very challenging this weekend with the combination of heavy snow, high winds, sleet, freezing and plain rain and then a rapid drop in temperatures on Sunday. If you must travel, please check 511PA for the latest conditions and be prepared in case extreme conditions trigger long delays on your route.”