Connecticut bans semitrailers from state highways amid severe weather

Here are a few tips from the American Automobile Association for driving when winter storm conditions strike.

7:50 p.m.: Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont activated the state’s Severe Cold Weather Protocol Wednesday afternoon. He announced this evening he is banning tractor-trailers for all of the state’s highways from 9 p.m. Wednesday to 9 a.m. Thursday due to the severe snowstorms in the area.

A travel advisory has been issued for all other drivers and non-essential workers.

It will not impact the COVID-19 vaccines which have already been delivered from Pfizer.

7:15 p.m.: Emergency crews are responding to a 20-car crash on Henry Hudson Parkway in New York City, according to a notice from the city government. All southbound are closed amid the snowstorm.

11:06 am: New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy has joined Pennsylvania’s Tom Wolf in declaring states of emergency ahead of a major winter storm that is forecast the hammer the East and Northeastern coasts.

According to the National Weather Service, the storm is set to bring snow, ice, heavy rains and thunderstorms, flooding and possibly even tornadoes from North Carolina to Maine.

Beginning Wednesday, snow is forecast for the Ohio Valley, central Appalachians and northern Mid-Atlantic. A wintry mix is forecast to stretch across the southern Appalachians and the Mid-Atlantic along the Interstate 95 corridor, bringing forecasts of up to a quarter inch of ice. Major cities such as Washington, D.C., and Philadelphia will likely see a wintry mix and rain. Cities such as New York City and Boston will also see heavy snow.

Dec. 15: Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf signed a proclamation of a disaster emergency ahead of the storm, which authorizes state use of resources and purchases.

The storm, a nor’easter, is expected to stretch from North Carolina up through Virginia before advancing north, blanketing some areas with up to 2 feet of snow, the National Weather Service said. The severe weather could also bring ice accumulations, tree damage, power outages, closures of schools and businesses, and dangerous travel conditions, the service said.

The storm will unleash a hazardous mix of rain and then heavy snow starting Wednesday, kicking off in western North Carolina and southwest Virginia, where it will let loose sheets of freezing rain, the Weather Service predicted.

From there, the system is expected to migrate and spread, stretching as far north as Boston, southern New Hampshire and Albany, New York. It could affect areas as far west as Pittsburgh and as far south as Washington and northern Virginia.

A major winter storm is forecast to hit the U.S. on Wednesday. Image NWS

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Late Wednesday morning, heavy snow is forecast to overtake areas near and northwest of Interstate 95 in the Mid-Atlantic region. Washington, Philadelphia and other major cities can expect to be blasted with a wintry mix of rain and snow.

By Wednesday evening, the system will churn farther northeast, dropping heavy snow on northern New Jersey and southern New York state, including New York City, the Weather Service said. By Wednesday night, the effect of the winter storm will be felt in southern New England, the service predicted.

Western Maryland and southern central Pennsylvania are forecast to bear the brunt of snow accumulations, with as much as 2 feet of snow falling, possibly leading to dangerous travel conditions and isolated power outages, the Weather Service said. Up to 2 feet of snow could blanket eastern Pennsylvania to northwest New Jersey.

More than 6 inches of snow is forecast from eastern West Virginia to southeast Massachusetts, but in areas along Interstate 95, including from central Maryland to Long Island, New York, the outcome is uncertain, depending on whether there is a mix of rain or snow.

The first day of winter is Dec. 21.