Travel restrictions slowing down truckers

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UPDATE: As of 11:00 p.m., PennDOT has lifted the Tier 1 travel restrictions on I-81- Luzerne County at Exit 151 A (1-80 East, Stroudsburg) to the Maryland State Line.

DUNMORE, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) – PennDOT had some restrictions in place along Interstate 81 Saturday night for commercial and other vehicles. Something truck drivers say they do not agree with.

“I think they should rethink how they do the restrictions,” said Durwin Degree, Truck Driver.

Durwin Degree has been driving trucks for three decades. Many deliveries have him traveling through Pennsylvania year round, with winter being the most difficult because of constant restrictions this season.

“A few years ago you didn’t have them, but now it’s very hard because you can’t make it to your destination in time,” said Degree.

Time that is money.

Degree says PennDOT should not impose travel restrictions hours before the first flakes fly and especially when light accumulation is expected. However, significant amounts are another story.

“Over a foot or something like that, absolutely close the roads down. Get the people off from it and give the snow plows time to clear it,” said Degree.

“The restrictions really do help us and they help the state police also because they’re the first responders to the scenes of accidents,” said Jessica Kalinoski, PennDOT District 4 Spokesperson.

PennDOT implemented its Tier 1 restrictions Saturday at noon, banning tractors with no trailers on Interstate 81, south of the I-80 corridor in Luzerne County.

Also banned? Commercial vehicles with no load and any passenger vehicle hauling anything. Recreational vehicles or motorcycles are also part of the ban.

“We’re looking to keep motorists safe. We have restrictions out in order to make sure in hopes that there won’t be any jackknifed tractor trailers and things of that nature on the interstates,” said Kalinowski.

PennDOT reminds drivers they can check road conditions and track snowplows on the 5-1-1 PA App. And it’s never too late to place an emergency kit in your vehicle in case you do get stranded.

Motorists can check conditions by visiting www.511PA.com.

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