What do you get when you ask truckers for help but also provide additional stipulations for them to do their jobs? You get a mess. This is what is happening in the state of New York, as the state government has declared both a State of Emergency and road closures for commercial vehicles.
State of Emergency
On November 17th Governor Kathy Hochul announced that there was a mighty need to help New York citizens weather the storm.
The FMCSA webpage explaining the declaration is very brief in its explanations, but there are two facts that relate directly to truckers. One is that the State will be entering into emergency contracts to procure relief supplies, which will no doubt include the delivery of the supplies. The other is the suspension of New York vehicle registration requirements (provided the commercial vehicle is registered in another state–not just any clunker will do!) and of the dimension requirements.
The Declaration is set to expire on December 17th.
New York state is also forbidding commercial vehicles from driving the following roadways in their entirety:
- I-290 – full length
- I-990 – full length
- Route 33 – full length
- Route 400 – full length
- Buffalo Skyway Route 5 – full length
The government is also putting forbidden areas on some roads, partially:
- Route 219 – Route 39 to I-90
- I-190 – Route 62 to I-90
- I-81 – Exit 33 to Canadian border – entire route is open, but trucks must exclusively use rightmost lane
- NYS Thruway (I-90) between exit 46 (Rochester – Corning – I-390) and exit 61 (Ripley – Shortman Road)
Why did the state government close down the roads to commercial vehicles, is it because they hate truckers so much? Not quite, it is in the name of safety.
Jackie Bray, Commissioner of the New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services, said in a statement, “Despite the unseasonably warm weather of late, winter is here across upstate New York. Do not underestimate this storm. We expect snow to be intense at times creating dangerous conditions, and significant accumulation to occur over the event. Now is the time to get prepared and have a plan. New Yorkers in the affected area who must travel later this week, should take it slow and build in extra time for your commute.”
If you are driving in New York this winter, be sure to take extra caution, even if not traveling upon one of the listed roadways that are banned from commercial vehicle travel. Heavy-duty trucks are especially vulnerable to slipping and sliding due to their intense weight, especially if they exceed the dimension requirements that would have otherwise been suspended.
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