In anticipation of an impending winter storm scheduled to hit tomorrow, Governor Dan McKee has signed an executive order to implement a tractor-trailer travel ban and to shut down the State government on Tuesday. The Governor is also strongly advising Rhode Islanders to refrain from traveling, particularly between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. on Tuesday.
“We are strongly urging Rhode Islanders to stay off the roads during the snowstorm tomorrow to allow the plows to do their job,” emphasized Governor Dan McKee. “We are encouraging businesses and employers to give their employees as much flexibility as possible.”
Effective from midnight until further notice, tractor-trailers will be prohibited on all interstate highways and state roads. This travel restriction has been coordinated closely with neighboring states, including Massachusetts, Connecticut, and New York.
Meteorological forecasts indicate that light snow is expected to commence between 4 a.m. and 8 a.m. on Tuesday, with the heaviest snowfall predicted between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. Accumulation is estimated to range from 3 to 14 inches across different parts of the state.
Governor McKee convened his cabinet earlier today to coordinate the state’s storm response, outlining the following preparations:
The Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) will deploy plow crews three hours before the expected storm start time to pre-treat roads. RIDOT has increased resources, with 450 plows available and a fully stocked inventory of 60,000 tons of salt. Additional tow trucks are on standby to swiftly clear any disabled vehicles in the Washington Bridge bypass lanes.
The Office of Energy Resources is in close contact with Rhode Island Energy (RIE) and the state’s delivered fuel terminals to monitor the storm’s impact on power and fuel supplies. RIE is bolstering its efforts with 75 external line crews and 80 forestry teams for prompt power restoration and assistance with downed trees.
The Rhode Island Emergency Management Agency (RIEMA) is coordinating with local emergency management agencies to ensure communities have necessary support in place. RIEMA will provide situational updates to state government, municipalities, and other partners throughout the storm. A list of local warming centers can be found at RIEMA.RI.GOV.
The Department of Housing is activating emergency pop-up shelters in addition to the existing shelter network. Details can be found at RIEMA.RI.GOV, including locations in Newport, Peace Dale (South Kingstown), Providence, Westerly, West Warwick, and Woonsocket.
Rhode Island State Police is prepared with additional troopers stationed across the state to assist motorists wherever needed.
Residents are advised to stay tuned to official channels for updates and adhere to safety measures during this winter weather event.
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