Ever wonder about the process of shutting down interstates? Who decides? For how long? Take a look..

Local News

PennDOT closing a portion of I-90 eastbound due to a two-car accident earlier today.  However, I-90 is no stranger to having portions shutdown or commercial bans implemented.

Just under a month ago, I-90 eastbound was shut down due to a 10-car pile-up.  This time, I-90 eastbound shutting down both lanes of Exit 41 to remove vehicles involved in an accident.

Jeremy Lopez, who has been driving a semi truck for 20 years is just one of the thousands of truck drivers who use I-90 during the winter.  He says it’s awful.

Lopez says, “This stuff comes up really quick. Sometimes it seems as it lasts forever with the slick roads and the DOT cannot keep up with it.”

Pennsylvania State Trooper Cindy Schick says this area is no stranger to accidents during the winter. “There is definitely an increase and then when you get blowing snow, the visibility is bad. Then, when cars start piling up, it is like a chain reaction; domino effect.”

One way to prevent motor vehicle accidents on the interstate during winter weather conditions is to implement a commercial motor vehicle driving ban, meaning that semi trucks and buses are not permitted to drive on banned portions of the interstate.”

Once the commercial bans are put in place, they pose concerns for truck drivers needing to finish their deliveries.

Scoob Miller, Truck Driver, tells us, “It puts you behind the eight ball. Either you try to go around or you take it with a grain of salt and take a break.”

Lopez says, “It puts us behind schedule and if we are not driving, we aren’t making money if we are not rolling.”

Jill Harry of PennDOT says that once bans are implemented, they are reviewed hourly by PennDOT, PEMA, and the State Police.  

They also coordinate with neighboring states that may be impacted by the ban.

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