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Whiteout conditions making travel nearly impossible

7:37 AM, Feb 9, 2013   |    comments
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PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Wind gusts near 50 miles an hour and more than two feet of snow have made travel conditions nearly impossible in southern and midcoast Maine.

In Portland, plow crews have been working around the clock since early Friday trying to keep the major roads passable.  The wind has been making that task much more difficult, with drifts filling in and covering roads as quickly as they can be plowed.

On I-295 plow crews are dealing with visibility near zero.  Region One supervisor Tim Cusick says they have had several plow trucks drive off into the ditch and is begging people to stay off the highway. 

He says drivers in town have street lights to help guide them, but plow crews do not have that advantage and are struggling to keep their trucks on the road.  He says they cannot keep up with the snowfall, and is concerned that cars traveling on the roadway will not be able to see and may drive off the road, with other cars possibly following their tracks and seeing their taillights.

As for other modes of transportation, most flights in to and out of the Portland International Jetport have been cancelled into Saturday afternoon.

Concord Coachlines has cancelled all bus service in Maine and New Hampshire for Saturday.

The Amtrak Downeaster has cancelled many of their daily trips between Boston and Maine because of the storm.

First responders are urging the public to stay home and avoid all unnecessary travel at all costs until the storm dies down and crews have a chance to catch up.

NEWS CENTER

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