Hundreds of motorists were stranded overnight – when temperatures dipped to the low teens – and into yesterday afternoon on a 50-mile hilly stretch of I-78 west of Allentown.State officials, under mounting criticism over their handling of the storm, said an unusual combination of snow, ice and immovable vehicles left road crews unable to keep up. The storm dumped seven inches of snow on I-78, followed by a three-inch crust of ice.
Gov. Rendell declared a state of emergency yesterday afternoon, directing all agencies to use full resources to cope with the storm.
Late Wednesday, National Guardsmen deployed in humvees ferried food, fuel and baby supplies, and state police used snowmobiles and other off-road vehicles to rescue some motorists and take them to shelter.