Westchester Travel Remains Slow, Hazardous As Winter Storm Passes

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Pedestrians navigated by using local roads before sidewalks were cleared. Traffic was light as many stayed off the roads. Photo Credit: Danny LoPriore
Despite snow plows and salting, many local roadways were slippery as temperatures dropped to below 10 degrees. Photo Credit: Danny LoPriore
Sidewalks in Westchester had 6-9 inches of snow but high winds caused snow drifts like this one in front of The Prime restaurant in Hastings. Photo Credit: Danny LoPriore

WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. -- Westchester County motorists and other commuters are finding the going slow, frigid and hazardous Friday morning as a fast-moving snowstorm swept offshore, leaving blowing and drifting snow and dangerous sub-zero wind chills behind.

The New York State Thruway (I-87), closed to all traffic by Gov. Andrew Cuomo Thursday at midnight, reopened to passenger cars at 5 a.m. but was not opened to commercial traffic until 8 a.m.

Interstate 84 remained closed to all traffic until 8 a.m. before reopening.

Kenneth Jung, who works at Hastings Stationary in Hastings-on-Hudson, traveled from Ridgewood, N.J., to open the store.

"It took 2 1/2 hours to get here," Jung said. "New Jersey was OK, but the New York Thruway was slow even though there were no trucks. The roads through Hastings and Dobbs Ferry were pretty good."

Westchester parkways were opened but traffic moved slowly in the morning commute. Many local and secondary were cleared but surfaces remained slippery as temperatures dropped below 10 degrees in most Westchester communities.

State police reported an accident at Exit 15 of I-95 with two lanes closed just before 8 a.m. Two lanes were blocked as emergency vehicles responded.

Westchester County Police reported no significant accidents or incidents but warned motorists to avoid driving if possible.

"Conditions are still very slick and dangerous on the parkways," County Police spokesperson Kieran O'Leary said on Friday morning. "We are urging people not to drive if they don't have to do so. We do suggest that motorists monitor the media to stay up to date on any reports of road closings,"

Metro-North commuters were inconvenienced a bit as the train service was on Saturday schedule with fewer trains running than the normal weekday schedule.

Snowfalls were reported from 6-10 inches with parking areas and sidewalks being cleared as the snow slowed after 8 a.m. Scarsdale reported 9.4 inches of snow accumulation at 6:55 a.m. on Friday, White Plains 8 inches at 8 a.m. and Mount Kisco 7.5 inches at 5:45 a.m.

Westchester's Bee Line bus service was suspended and the county reported that buses and Paratransit vehicles would start service when weather conditions permit safe operations.

The Westchester County Airport was open Friday morning. Passengers were advised to check with their carrier for specific flight information.

Most Westchester school districts were closed for the Christmas and New Years Day holidays, but several districts, including Ossining, Harrison, Mount Vernon, Pelham, Blind Brook, Briarcliff Manor, Yonkers, Katonah/Lewisboro, Lakeland, Peekskill and North Salem as well as Westchester Community College closed Friday.

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