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Holiday drivers advised to take it easy

| Wednesday, Nov. 27, 2013, 2:11 a.m.
Louis B. Ruediger
Slow moving motorists travel Route 66 North in Rayburn Township on Tuesday. November 26, 2013
Louis B. Ruediger
A PennDOT plow and salt truck maintains River Road in the Mosgrove area on Tuesday. Tuesday, Nov. 26, 2013

Motorists are urged to use caution during the Thanksgiving travel period as winter weather combined with heavy traffic is expected to impact local roads and interstate highways, Pennsylvania Department of Transportation officials said.

The National Weather Service in Pittsburgh issued a winter storm warning on Tuesday for Armstrong County, calling for a mix of rain and sleet to change over to snow and continue until about 1 p.m. Wednesday.

Additional snow showers are expected to move into the area overnight Wednesday.

Total snow accumulation for Armstrong County could reach up to 8 inches, with temperatures at times hovering around the freezing mark, a weather service spokesman said.

Some area students got an early jump on their Thanksgiving break on Tuesday because of snow.

The Armstrong School District canceled afternoon kindergarten classes, dismissed high school students about 15 minutes early and canceled all after-school activities.

Most drivers appeared to be taking things slow, a state police spokesman at East Franklin said Tuesday, noting that although several accidents had been reported, the incidents did not exceed normal levels.

According to a PennDOT news release, winter weather is affecting much of Pennsylvania.

“The Thanksgiving travel period tends to bring the highest volume of traffic to our roadways and, unfortunately, it has the highest number of crashes compared to other holidays as well,” PennDOT Secretary Barry J. Schoch said. “Drivers should build extra travel time into their schedules, especially with varying winter weather across the state.”

Motorists can check road conditions and traffic-delay warnings by visiting www.511PA.com or by calling 877-511-7366.

Brigid Beatty is a staff writer for Trib Total Media.

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