Nor’easter dumps heavy snow, winter mix in the Philadelphia area

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) – Wednesday, a major snowstorm rolled into the Northeast, bringing heavy snow to parts of southeastern Pennsylvania and a winter mix and rain as you got closer to shore.

Snow actually fell in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, where as much as 6.5 inches of snow was recorded in parts of the county.

We also saw some children playing by the Christmas tree, while others rushed to find shelter indoors. Even in the snow, many still adhere to and cover up masking mandates.

PennDOT did its best to keep drivers safe in the Lehigh Valley.

“It works out pretty well and they will be plowing all day tomorrow until we get everything clear,” said PennDOT District Officer Ron Young.

ALSO SEE: View your latest AccuWeather forecast

In Allentown, some travelers tried to get home during the height of the storm.

“Highways get slippery. Especially when you get off the highway,” said Josh Haeuser from Nazareth.

In Chester County, the first flakes started to fall in Phoenixville around 1 p.m. By 2:00 PM, the roads were muddy and filled with snow.

‘I’ll just go home and stay home. I just came to get what I needed to take home, ”Mike Harper said as he passed a store.

The National Weather Service recorded 7 inches of snow in Oxford, Pa.

ALSO SEE: Delays, travel restrictions in Philadelphia area due to winter storm

Chester County is covered by a winter weather warning that will last until 10:00 am Thursday. Government offices closed at 2 p.m. on Wednesday as snow began to accumulate.

The Borough of Phoenixville has declared a snow emergency, prohibiting cars from parking along the roads designated as snow routes. The task is to make sure that the snowploughs have enough space to maneuver in the storm.

For three-year-old Knox and other children in the region, nothing beats a white Christmas. Knox made snow angels on Wednesday afternoon and threw snowballs in Wayne, Pennsylvania.

“Quite excited because he hasn’t had a real snow day yet,” said Wayne’s mother Nicole Washington. “There was hardly any snow last year. So excited to get him out there and play.”

For some, the flakes are a nice reprieve from the tiring year 2020.

During the height of the storm, Delaware County officials say first responders assisted in more than 100 emergencies, including a multiple vehicle pile-up on I-95 in Ridley.

“I think seven people had to be transported, but it just goes to show how hard we put our EMS systems to work during this COVID period. Seven ambulances coming to I-95 during a snowstorm is a big task in our county, ”said Timothy Boyce, director of Delaware County Emergency Services.

In Reading town center, snow blowers were humming as some people got a head start on cleanup.

About half a foot of snow fell in Berks County, much of it in just a few hours.

Reading Mayor Eddie Moran says, “During this blizzard, I’m going to ask again to be good neighbors to everyone. Look at the elderly.”

In Philadelphia, the National Weather Service reports 5.7 inches of snow – the most since 2018.

“The first is always a little bit of magic now. It makes everything cleaner. It makes this year, which was a little bit more challenging, a little bit more bearable and a little bit more festive at this time of year,” said Christina of South Philadelphia.

The flakes evoke memories of her children, for 83-year-old Elizabeth Moto. “I just remember they were young and happy and playing,” she says.

For some, the roads aren’t the main concern, but what comes once you get to the house.

“On the way home. Hopefully I have a parking space. If not, I’ll drive back here to park and walk back home,” said Ron Ashworth, who is willing to walk 12 blocks, but only if I have to.

Bucks County officials are asking residents to give them time to clear the roads after several inches of snow fell Wednesday night. We found many people training in the snow and enjoying it.

“If you’re not plowing here or trying to keep the roads clean, just stay at home,” said Gavi Verona of GL & Sons Landscaping. He had multiple crews working in Warrington Township clearing snow from large parking lots.

‘Right now I am benefiting. There is not too much snow. I’ll bring my men food and hot soup, ”Verona said.

Once the sun set and the flakes turned to ice, the roads were pretty empty, except for the crew crews at Warrington.

The nor’easter brought winter mix and rain to parts of South Jersey.

The snow started to fall around 1:00 PM and soon began to cover major roads and neighborhoods.

“We recommend that you take it slow, use common sense and caution,” said Governor Phil Murphy.

The state deployed nearly 4,000 plows and spreaders to treat roads during the storm, but the thick snow still gathered on major roads like Route 30 in Lawnside and also caused visibility problems in places like Lakeview Drive in Voorhees Township.

“It brings back the normal times, the normalcy of things in a sense. It takes our minds a little bit away from the crazy pandemic that’s going on,” said Charles Giddins of Pennsauken.

The NWS reported 3.9 inches of snow in Salem County, 6.5 inches of snow in Cherry Hill, and 0.5 inches of snow in Cumberland County.

Officials said they did not expect the winter blast to disrupt the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, which began Monday for primary care health workers, the first group of Americans to receive the shots. The first 3 million admissions are strictly limited to those workers and nursing home residents.

US Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar said Wednesday that the government is closely monitoring vaccine shipments, already has staff to receive them, and believes the companies transporting them can weather the storm.

“This is FedEx, this is UPS express shipping. They know how to handle snow and bad weather. But we’re on it and we’re following it,” he told Fox News Channel’s “Fox & Friends.”

With 35 vaccine deliveries to New Jersey hospitals expected in the next two days, Murphy said his administration was focused on ensuring they continued, including by exempting vaccine delivery trucks from a storm-related ban on commercial traffic on some highways. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said his state’s first round of vaccination had already been distributed to some 90 hospitals, and the next delivery should not take place until about Tuesday, well after the storm.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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