A winter storm warning issued by the National Weather Service (NWS) remains in effect statewide until 10:00am Feb. 17, Delaware Emergency Management officials said early Tuesday morning.
State of Delaware offices are closed during regular business hours 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. DEMA Community Relations Officer Gary Laing said in a 5:45 a.m. press release. Non-essential employees are not to report to work for this period. Essential employees are to report as scheduled. New Castle County government offices are also closed.
The forecast calls for the snow to end around 8 a.m., with possibly up to an inch of additional snow. An estimated accumulation of 4 to 6 inches of snow is expected in New Castle County, with 6 to 10 inches in Kent and Sussex counties, Laing said.
Roads are reported snow covered. Road and weather conditions will have varying impacts on the morning rush hour. Motorists should allow extra time for their morning commute, reduce speeds, and use extreme caution while driving. The speed limit on Interstate 495 in New Castle County was reduced to 45 mph at around 3 a.m. and the speed limit on the Delaware Memorial Bridge was dropped to 50 mph. DelDOT is plowing and salting major roads across the state, and will get to secondary and minor roads as the snow ends, Laing said.
A number of public and private schools in Delaware have reported closings, and a complete list can be found at schoolclosings.delaware.gov/. The Georgetown campus of Delaware Technical Community College is closed although other DelTech campuses are reported as open. Wesley College in Dover is set to open at 9:30 a.m., with a re-evaluation of the situation to take place by 7 a.m., Laing said.
There have been some minor problems statewide with power outages, but most areas have been restored, he said.
Gov. Jack Markell’s office said drivers should pay extra attention to road conditions.
“While the snow will stop this morning, freezing conditions will remain throughout the day and some roads will remain treacherous,” Markell said in a statement.
“DelDOT does not expect to start clearing secondary roads statewide until mid-day. Due to those road conditions and because it does not appear that state facilities will be safe for employees and the public until some point late today, state offices will be closed. Other employers should evaluate for themselves whether and when their facilities will be safe and the status of road conditions in their vicinity.
“We encourage drivers who do not need to travel to delay or refrain from going on the roads to give DelDOT plows time and ability to work.”
Officials at Dover Air Force Base are requiring emergency and MEL 1 personnel to report as scheduled. There will be a two-hour delay for MEL 2 and MEL 3 personnel, unless otherwise needed to perform essential duties.
Dover AFB personnel should call 677-2273, visit the base webpage at dover.af.mil or check the base Facebook page for the latest reporting instructions.