Monday, February 15, 2010

Good Morning. Sunrise over the Parkway East. Pittsburgh, Pa

Howdy folks.

I'd thought that this had auto posted earlier today onto Posterous.  Guess not.

Ah, the Steel City.....Pittsburgh.  And the infamous Parkway East in the morning.
I've been listening to the local AM radio traffic reports   since about 4am EST. (KDKA 1020)
Something seems to be happening lately around the Pittsburgh tunnels that not many
truckers seem to be thinking about.

Snow!  ahem.....

Snow on the trailer roof to be specific.  The Pittsburgh tunnels are extremely low clearance and
the tolerances are rather tight.  Maybe an inch or two over the maximum height. 

So,  you have a little snow on the roof of the trailer and the Low Clearance Warning Lights go off. 
The authorities shut down the tunnel to stop the trucker from going through.  There is a bit of a back up
as the truck is turned away from the tunnel entrance.  This requires shutting the tunnel down in both directions for about
5 or so minutes.  And this happens quite a few times a day.  When it happens during rush hour the results are
spectacular.  I'm amazed at just how fast traffic can back up in so few minutes.

The Squirrel Hill Tunnel seems to get the brunt of these closures.  Located on I-376 just east of Pittsburgh, Pa.  This tunnel is a
major link into the city.  During rush hour any tie up at all around it can cause some serious delays.

What's a driver to do.  If you've never been to Pittsburgh in a big rig with a box trailer be aware that any
amount of snow on the roof of your trailer is likely to set off the low clearance sensors.  Plan your trip to avoid all tunnels
in the Pittsburgh area till say.......April!?!   :)  You're going to have to give yourself some extra time and distance to negotiate
the Pittsburgh region without using the tunnels.  It can be done with some ease if you plan ahead.

Love y'all.

God Speed and Good Driving.

Posted via email from heydriver's posterous

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