Less storm impact; some still in dark

WAYNE/PIKE – The second major snow storm in less than a week provided less of a punch while still transforming the landscape into another “winter wonderland.”

WAYNE/PIKE – The second major snow storm in less than a week provided less of a punch while still transforming the landscape into another “winter wonderland.”
Wednesday’s storm, known as Winter Storm Quinn, was forecasted to leave about a foot of snow or more before it was done, in the greater Hawley Lake Region. As measured at White Mills, only seven inches came, still a lot, but four inches less than Winter Storm Riley five days before.
Absent was the high winds which caused such havoc with the first storm, bringing down trees and limbs on utility wires, casting thousands of residents in the dark.
Just looking at the Pike County Emergency Management log, on Wednesday March 7, fire companies were called out only twice for utility lines. On Friday, March 2, fire departments in Pike were summoned an astonishing 115 times for utility wires, downed trees or related traffic details.
It was a reason to be thankful there was at least a very short break between storms, during which roads dried off and the heavy wet snow from the first round retreated enough- to give space for round two.
Still, on Wednesday, thousands of people in the area were still without power from the first storm. Many had roofs and other property damaged from fallen trees and limbs.  Residents were coping with the daily frustration, waiting for power to come back and their lives to return to something closer to normal. Now they had more snow to move.
As of Thursday, March 7, PPL was still reporting that there were 2,533 customers without power, six days after Winter Storm Riley. It was not clear how many may have been new reports of outages, caused by Quinn.
The biggest concentration was scattered from above Hawley to Shohola.
The American Red Cross, on Thursday, reported that a new shelter was being opened in Matamoras in response to delays caused by Wednesday’s storm on stirring power there from last week. The shelter is at the Matamoras Fire Department, 506 Avenue Q, Matamoras,
As of Thursday, there was also a shelter still open at Dingman Township Volunteer Fire Department , 680 Log Tavern Road, and at Stroudsburg High School, 1100 W. Main St., Stroudsburg.
The Red Cross reported that on Wednesday night, about 70 people spent the night in Red Cross shelters in the Poconos. The shelters were providing hot meals, a safe place to sleep and emotional support for those with immediate, disaster-related needs. Hot showers and charging stations are also available.
In addition, the Red Cross also supported several partner-run shelters and daytime warming centers. For information about their locations, contact the county Emergency Management Agency (EMA) or your municipality.
Power outages were expected to last through the end of the week in some places.
NOTE: If anyone is still in need of a shelter this weekend, contact your county’s EMA office, municipality or the the Red Cross. Information supplied in this article was current as of Thursday.
Recent severe weather has had an impact on schedules, from private to public. School children have been given an unplanned winter vacation, while school officials consider how to make up the lost classroom time. The American Red Cross announced that scheduled blood drives had to be cancelled, further heightening the need for blood donations.
The PA State Police enacted a travel ban for commercial vehicles on 1-81, I-84 and I-380 during the second storm, and speed limits were reduced to 45 m.p.h. The State Police reported that despite this, 65 traffic citations were issued to commercial vehicle users violating the ban. The drivers were given prior notice from sign boards and media announcements. The travel ban was enforceable under the State of Emergency declared by Governor Wolf. The violations were a summary offense and carried a $300 fine upon conviction.
The Red Cross notes that you can help people affected by disasters like winter storms or countless other crises by making a donation to support American Red Cross Disaster Relief. Your gift enables the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small. Donate by visiting www.redcross.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS or texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.