2010-02-11 / Front Page

Digging Out Continues, More Snow Falling

Municipalities could be reimbursed for weekend snowstorm costs
By Chanin Rotz-Mountz STAFF WRITER

Two feet of snow cover the empty sidewalks of Lincoln Way East in downtown McConnellsburg Saturday morning following a powerhouse storm that wreaked havoc in the Middle Atlantic States over the weekend. Two feet of snow cover the empty sidewalks of Lincoln Way East in downtown McConnellsburg Saturday morning following a powerhouse storm that wreaked havoc in the Middle Atlantic States over the weekend. In Taylor Township, municipal supervisors announced Tuesday morning they “gotta be ready” for yet another bout of heavy snow that is expected to blanket the area through Wednesday evening.

However, as they prepare to tackle the newest storm, local officials admit they are still reeling from the effects of last weekend’s “Snowmageddon” that dumped upwards of 24 inches of snow in some areas of the county.

From behind the wheel of the township truck, Supervisor Richard Doney told the “News” the supervisors and their small work complement overseen by roadmaster Murray Romig spent countless hours navigating and removing snow from the township’s 30.41 miles of roadway. Fifteen hours alone were logged Saturday by the crew.

The difficult driving conditions caused by the weekend’s heavy snow kept this motorist stuck on North Second Street from negotiating the alley at attorney Jim Schall’s office. The difficult driving conditions caused by the weekend’s heavy snow kept this motorist stuck on North Second Street from negotiating the alley at attorney Jim Schall’s office. Doney stated a snowblade broke on their equipment over the weekend while plowing on Hollow Road, thereby forcing the crew to utilize their grader to complete their duties. They hoped to get the blade fixed and operational on Tuesday as National Weather Service (NWS) forecasters are predicting one to three inches during daylight hours as well as an additional four to eight inches Tuesday night and two to four inches more on Wednesday.

Also in preparation for the winter storm warning issued by NWS that expires at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Doney noted work crews have already been revisiting roadways, such as Frick Road, that were experiencing blowing snow in order to further push back the mounds of drifting snow. The question still looms for municipal officials across the county, however, where will they push the additional snowfall that is predicted.

Municipal officials did receive one bright note, though, in what has otherwise been a busy week. Funding could be eligible to reimburse townships for certain expenses incurred during the weekend “Snowmageddon” storm, according to Fulton County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) Director Vince Joyce.

“Fulton County’s snowfall is close to if not in excess of official National Weather Service records,” said Joyce. Official measurements are expected to be available at some point this week.

Joyce informed the “News” local municipalities have been advised to declare a disaster/ snow emergency. All declarations should be forwarded to the county EMA office within two weeks along with a list of eligible costs associated with the storm. Eligible costs have been categorized as overtime/extra time for full-time labor; all hours worked by part-time, temporary or called-in employees; hourly equipment costs; material costs; contracted services costs; and equipment rental spanning a continuous 48-hour period.

Joyce added the information will be submitted to the Federal Emergency Management Agency for consideration in order for Gov. Ed Rendell to seek a Federal Declaration.

“This is not a guarantee that reimbursement will be forthcoming, but it is worth trying as it would be with any declared emergency,” he concluded.

Township officials and PennDOT road crews weren’t the only individuals working diligently over the frosty weekend. Allegheny Power was called on to restore power to a total of 180 customers spanning Fulton and Franklin counties, while Pennsylvania State Police at the McConnellsburg barracks were on the roadways responding to multiple crashes.

One collision near the village of Waterfall on Friday, February 5, resulted in a Broad Top woman suffering “major” injuries when an oncoming truck collided with her car. Christina M. Musser, 41, was reportedly transported to UPMC Bedford Memorial immediately following the 4:15 p.m. crash before being taken to Altoona, where she was listed in serious condition.

Investigating officer Trooper Kenneth Falkosky reported 67-year-old Victor R. Black of Hustontown lost control of his southbound 2005 Ford F-250 while ascending a hill along Route 655 in Taylor Township. The truck spun into the oncoming lane and struck Musser’s northbound 2005 Pontiac Sunfire.

Black was not injured, however, passengers Margaretta Mae Bucher, 38, of Hustontown and a 10-yearold girl from Orbisonia both sustained minor injuries. Bucher and the juvenile were taken to Fulton County Medical Center for treatment.

The trio were properly restrained with seat belts as was Musser. Musser’s car was disabled as a result of the damage, while Black’s truck sustained moderate damage. State police were aided by PennDOT and the Hustontown Volunteer Fire Co.

A short time later at 5:45 p.m., troopers were dispatched to another two-vehicle accident along the westbound lanes of Interstate 70. Susan B. Davidson, 44, of Woodsboro, Md., according to reports, lost control of her 2003 Mitsubishi Lancer. Davidson stopped her spinning car on the Bethel Township roadway, causing fellow motorist Sherry L. Speaker, 50, from Edgewater, Md., to swerve.

The right front of Speaker’s 2007 Chevrolet Covalt struck the left rear corner of Davidson’s car. Following impact, Speaker’s Covalt slid into the median strip.

Both Davidson and Speaker suffered minor injuries, while passenger Thomas W. Speaker, 45, of Taylor, Mich., escaped harm. All three were wearing seat belts. Davidson will be cited by state police for driving a vehicle at safe speeds in connection with the crash.

Return to top