By Mike Dunn

By Mike Dunn

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — City officials today asked businesses not to close early, so streets will remain relatively clear and the plows can do their work.

No snow emergency was declared by the city today, and all government operations stayed on schedule, to avoid an early rush hour.

“When there is a mass early closure, we tend to get traffic jams, which cause the snowplows to get caught up in the traffic,” noted streets commissioner David Perri today.  “And it’s usually better for all if they (closings) are either staggered, or we wait for conditions to improve.”

Perri says he dispatched more than 200 vehicles, either salting or equipped with plows.

“Our main concern is that at a one-inch-per-hour rate of snowfall, visibility will be very poor, and the snow will pile up faster than it can plowed or melted with salt,” he said.

And Perri said this winter is proving to be one of the harshest in Philadelphia history.

“If we get the six inches that’s predicted, this will be the first time in the city’s history that we’ve had four six-inch-or-better snowstorms in one season.”

In fact, this is the eleventh time this season that city plows were mobilized: nine snow events and two ice storms.

Trash collection is on a normal schedule this week, Perri noted.

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