Travel bans lifted in tri-county area, but driving conditions still hazardous

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December 26 — Watertown — Travel bans in Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence counties have all been lifted, but northern driving conditions remain dangerous due to winter storms.

Jefferson County lifted the travel ban on Monday morning, announced in an email from the county sheriff’s office. Instead of an outright ban, an advisory “Avoid unnecessary travel” was issued.

“Blizzards, snow drifts and tall snowdrifts will continue to obstruct visibility, and ongoing snow removal and recovery operations will pose additional hazards to drivers,” the release said.

St. Lawrence County will allow travel bans for Waddington, Madrid, Lisbon, Oswegatchie, Depeyster, Macomb, Hammond and Rossy to expire at noon on Christmas Day, with a “non-essential travel ban” that expires at 8 p.m. ” also issued a recommendation. On Christmas Eve morning, the Lewis County travel ban was lifted.

Monday saw better weather than the weekend in most of the north. But in the city of Watertown, snow continued to fall on Monday morning, adding a few more inches to the already feet-high drifts and poles.

According to Joseph D. Plummer, Jefferson County Fire and Emergency Management Officer, Monday’s snow was primarily concentrated in Watertown and northern Jefferson County, with the band moving northward to Watertown, Clayton, and New York. We headed south across the St. Lawrence River, through Alexandria Bay, Gouverneur. Ontario. Southern Jefferson and Lewis counties saw very little snow on Monday.

Plummer said decontamination work has begun throughout Jefferson County, and things are going as smoothly as ever.

“Road workers are on the ground doing their job and getting the job done,” he said. “Obviously people are doing their own cleanup, so it’s a good idea to be careful there.”

Plummer said shoveling snow can be a very physically demanding job, especially given the amount of snow on the ground after this storm. He says that even the elderly, those with medical conditions, and even those who are healthy are fully aware of how they feel when shoveling snow, and take extra steps to keep warm in sub-zero temperatures. said that it is necessary to take

He said he was aware of no fatalities in Jefferson County as of Monday morning.

Cleanup is an important undertaking, but one bit unfamiliar to the northern country, and the infrastructure to clear roads and protect property is progressing predictably. It was assisting county, town, and city highway crews.

A storm suddenly broke in on Friday, and the situation worsened literally by the second around noon, trapping many motorists on county roads. Plummer said he couldn’t even guess how many people were stranded on the road over the weekend, but law enforcement and emergency services worked hard throughout the weekend to reach and keep them safe. was working.

“This has made the 911 center very busy,” he said. “We have over 500 complaints logged into our system every day. That’s all we deal with throughout the day, most of it storm related. About 220 to 250 complaints a day. Total.”

Plummer said it’s difficult to compare one storm to another, especially since technology has changed so much. Some people listened to the historic 1977 blizzard as this storm reached blizzard levels in wind speed and snowfall.

“Frankly, we are better prepared than ever because we have better technology telling us when it will snow, how much to expect, the wind, etc.,” he said.

Plummer said snow removal operations are continuing and crews are on standby for the remaining snow that is expected to hit Watertown Monday night.

“The dedication of first responders, including our 911 dispatchers, should be recognized by all,” he said. “They left their homes too, answering phones, dispatching people, controlling chaos as best they could. They’re always the unsung heroes because no one sees them. It’s not about staying away from the fire.While law enforcement and EMS are battling the storm directly, first responders are going nowhere without dispatchers.”

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