Gov. Baker, Lt. Gov. Polito Urge Massachusetts Residents to Use Caution During Wednesday Snow Storm
Mar 07, 2018 12:22AM ● Published by Bill Gilman
Governor Charlie Baker, Lt. Governor Karyn Polito
BOSTON – In preparation for tomorrow’s winter storm, Gov. Charlie Baker and Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito are urging residents of the Commonwealth to plan ahead and use extreme caution.
“As we continue to assist the cities and towns impacted by last weekend’s storm, the Commonwealth is preparing for another significant winter storm to impact much of the state starting midday Wednesday,” said Baker. “Our administration is asking everyone to exercise caution on the roadways as the snow will cause hazardous driving conditions, especially west of Route 128 and extending throughout Western and Central Massachusetts. Please monitor the weather forecast, plan ahead and call 211 if you have any questions.”
“A majority of the Commonwealth will be significantly impacted by this winter storm on the heels of last week’s brutal storm that many communities are still recovering from,” said Polito. “Snow totals are estimated to be the highest in Western and Central Massachusetts, with snow falling heavily during the afternoon commute and creating dangerous conditions. Please plan your day and use public transportation when possible, leaving plenty of time for your evening commute if you must drive during the storm.”
MassDOT’s snow and ice operations will be deployed as conditions necessitate. Crews are currently conducting preparation activities in advance of the winter weather and will be pretreating roadways with brine and Magnesium Chloride. MassDOT is also currently planning deployments of snowplows and spreaders and maintenance equipment.
In the worst storms, MassDOT’s Highway Division is able to utilize up to 700 personnel to perform snow and ice removal operations on more than 15,000 lanes miles of roadway throughout the Commonwealth. This winter, MassDOT will have approximately 4,200 pieces of state and vendor equipment available using over 150 depots and storage locations. This includes over 1,300 plow and spreader combos, 2,100 plows, and 460 front-end loaders.
Because of the timing of the storm, the MBTA is advising customers to plan ahead and allow for additional travel time on Wednesday evening and Thursday morning. The MBTA will operate non-passenger trains overnight (early Thursday morning) to keep the tracks clear and to look for any trees or branches that pose a threat. MBTA emergency crews will be on standby throughout the storm to respond to instances of broken rail, issues affecting the power systems, potential switch problems, and any water-related issues that may occur.
Power crews will continue to inspect overhead wires on the Blue and Green Lines, looking for ice buildup with ice cutters installed on Blue and Green Line vehicles designed to remove ice buildup on catenary wires. Increased staffing will be present throughout the system with snow-fighting equipment pre-deployed in key areas and snow-operating plans currently in place.