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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A state of emergency has been declared for New Jersey and Pennsylvania ahead of this weekend’s winter storm. New Jersey’s state of emergency begins at noon on Saturday.
The upcoming storm is expected to bring heavy snow, high winds, sleet and freezing rain across the two states through the weekend.
In Pennsylvania, there will be speed restrictions and a ban on all commercial traffic, including buses on most interstates and the Pennsylvania Turnpike. Speed limits will be restricted to 45 mph on the interstates and expressways as the storm progresses.
The commercial vehicle ban will be in place between noon Saturday and noon Sunday on all interstates and the Turnpike, except for I-95 in southeastern Pennsylvania. The ban will also be imposed on the U.S. 22 expressway in the Lehigh Valley and the Pennsylvania Route 33 expressway in Northampton and Monroe counties.
“We want to be aggressive in managing this storm, during which snowfall rates could exceed one to two inches per hour,” Gov. Tom Wolf said. “Our top concern is the safety of residents. If you do not have to travel during the storm, please avoid it. Please heed warnings from emergency responders and personnel, and remember to check on your neighbors, especially the elderly.”
Anticipating the storm’s severity, Amtrak has already cancelled the cross-state Pennsylvanian passenger train for Sunday and has cancelled six trains Sunday on the Keystone Line between Philadelphia and Harrisburg.
In New Jersey, the Department of Transportation is prepared to respond to the storm with up to 2,500 plows and spreaders.
“The latest forecasts continue to indicate that New Jersey will receive significant snow this weekend,” said Gov. Phil Murphy. “We are closely monitoring the approaching snow storm and are prepared to keep New Jerseyans safe. Residents are urged to stay off the roads to the extent possible and always use their best judgment when traveling.”
You can get the latest weather updates on CBSPhilly.com.