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Monday Commute May Be a Doozy, State Highway Administration Says

There may be some heavy-duty tow trucks out and about Monday morning.

Snow wasn't sticking to roads in Baltimore but was coming down steadily at 9:45 p.m. on Sunday. (Credit: Elizabeth Janney)
Snow wasn't sticking to roads in Baltimore but was coming down steadily at 9:45 p.m. on Sunday. (Credit: Elizabeth Janney)

UPDATE (7 a.m.)—The Maryland State Highway Administration (SHA) encouraged drivers to stay off the roads and said additional snow was on the way, in a statement Monday morning.

"We want you to delay your travels until snowfall subsides," SHA Administrator Melinda B. Peters said. "Staying off of the roads makes it easier for our crews to do their work plowing and treating roads."

With more than 2,500 highway crews out, drivers will likely come across snow plows and plow trains, the SHA said, adding that people should give them plenty of room and never try to pass a plow train.

Low temperatures and wet snow will increase the chances of fallen trees, signal outages, downed power lines and slick roads, the SHA said.

The following report was published Sunday based on information from the SHA.

With snow raining down on Maryland roads, the State Highway Administration said it was preparing for Monday morning's commute—and officials urged drivers to do the same.

Eight inches of accumulation are forecast in some parts of the state.

"Motorists should expect the unexpected and prepare for a worst-case scenario," the State Highway Administration (SHA) said in a prepared statement on Sunday. "Pavement temperatures are generally warm today so it could be several hours before snow begins to adhere to road surfaces."

Roads will become snow-covered and slippery overnight and travel will be dangerous through the morning rush hour, according to the National Weather Service.

The SHA said it was dispatching crews for plowing and towing.

"In addition to the regular complement of plow trucks, SHA will position large heavy-duty tow trucks in strategic areas along the interstate system for rapid response in the event of tractor trailer crashes," the statement said.

Snow is expected to fall heavily between midnight and late Monday morning, according to the National Weather Service, which recommended avoiding traveling unless there was an emergency.

If travel is necessary, the SHA offered these reminders:
  • Before you go, clear your vehicle of snow and keep your ice scraper handy.
  • Charge mobile devices in case you get stranded.
  • Drive more slowly than normal—posted speed limits are for good weather conditions.

Nosmo King March 17, 2014 at 08:36 AM
"With snow raining down..." Huh? How does snow rain down?
Kolo Jezdec March 17, 2014 at 12:47 PM
Well, one of the definitions of 'rain' is a heavy fall, as in "a rain of deadly arrows." So a heavy snowfall can easily be termed as "raining down."
J Leland March 17, 2014 at 05:06 PM
Easy to tell who has too much time on their hands...
Kolo Jezdec March 18, 2014 at 08:11 AM
Leland, you are right. And as a teacher, I could not resist the 'teachable moment.'

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