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Mayor Nutter Declares Snow Emergency For City of Philadelphia

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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — As a result of the intense snow storm, all Archdiocese of Philadelphia and Philadelphia School District schools will be closed Wednesday.

The announcement was made by Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter during a news conference Tuesday afternoon outside City Hall.

In addition to the school announcement, Nutter also said a Snow Emergency goes into effect in Philadelphia at 4 p.m.

Nutter said the Snow Emergency was declared with the public’s safety in mind.

“We ask citizens to use extreme caution about being out in next 24 hours. All parked cars must be moved off snow emergency routes by 4 p.m. today (Tuesday),” Nutter said. “If your car isn’t moved, it will be relocated.”

For citizens, a Snow Emergency means all parked cars must be moved off Snow Emergency routes for plowing. When relocating your car, park as far from the corner of the street as possible; vehicles parked too close to the corner impede the turning radius of plowing equipment. Snow Emergency information and a map of Snow Emergency routes can be found at www.philadelphiastreets.com, click on Transportation, Highways, and then Snow. Cars left on Snow Emergency routes will be relocated to accommodate plowing operations. If you car is relocated, call 215-686-SNOW to find it.

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Nutter asked for people to stay off the roads, if possible.

“It’s going to be a rough 12 to 18 hours,” Nutter said.

In addition, Nutter announced that all City of Philadelphia offices will be closed tomorrow, Wednesday, due to the weather. All non-essential personnel are asked to stay home and off the roads.

Employees who are unsure if they are deemed essential should check with their immediate supervisor.

“This is a very serious storm. The combination of the amount of snowfall, combined with plummeting temperatures and high winds, makes this a very dangerous storm,” Nutter said.

The Philadelphia Office of Emergency Management began a limited activation of the City’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC) at 3:00 p.m. to coordinate city services during the snow storm.

Deputy Managing Director for Emergency Management Samantha Phillips encourages Philadelphians to stay informed:

  • —  Tune to local radio and TV news for updates.
  • —  Sign up for emergency alerts, weather updates and transportation delays from ReadyNotifyPA at www.phila.gov/ready.
  • —  Follow OEM on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, Blogger and You Tube, all of which are available at www.phila.gov/ready.

Phillips also recommends that Philadelphians have emergency supply kits for their homes and vehicles.  Items should include bottled water, energy or granola bars, blankets, first-aid kit, and wind up radio and flashlight or battery powered radio and flashlight with extra batteries.

The 311 Call Center will remain open throughout the evening to take calls for non-emergencies.

Call 311 for snow-related updates. Only call 911 if there is a medical or life-threatening situation.

Citizens should contact the Project Home Outreach Hotline 215-232-1984 if they observe a homeless person(s) in need of assistance.  During the call, citizens should provide the address, location and description of the person in need.

SEPTA’s Subway and El will continue to operate on a normal schedule throughout the evening.  Bus routes may be delayed/detoured or suspended.  Customers should check www.septa.org for the latest updates.

READ: SEPTA Hopes To Avert Systemwide Shutdown; Says All Services Experiencing Major Delays

Due to the Martin Luther King Day federal holiday, sanitation collections are delayed one day throughout the week.  Regular Tuesday collections will be cancelled tomorrow (Wednesday) and postponed until next week.  Citizens with regular Tuesday pick-up should hold their trash until next week and place trash out on their normal pick-up day.

All property owners are also required to clear a path of at least 3 feet in front of their property within 6 hours of the snow event ending, including curb cuts.

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