The travel ban issued Saturday in St. Lawrence County due to treacherous roadways amid Ice Storm 2013 was lifted at 6 p.m. today, according to Sheriff Kevin Wells.
But a State of Emergency remains in place throughout the county and the county Emergency Operation Center is still open, he said.
“Many areas of the county have been hit hard with damaging amounts of freezing rain, downed trees and power lines,” he said. “This is especially true in the southern and southeast portion of the county. The winds, additional sleet and now plummeting temperatures are causing additional issues with the ice covered trees and power lines.”
Wells noted there were still over 3,000 National Grid customers without electricity in the county this afternoon. (By 5 p.m., the number had increased to more than 7,300.)
He said a travel advisory is still recommended and urged motorists to use caution and be aware of utility workers and state Department of Transportation, county highway and local Department of Public Works employees trying to do their jobs.
“When you see them working alongside the roadway, move over,” Wells said.
He noted the county 911-Emergency Services Dispatch Center is handling hundreds of calls for service and to assist people in need. He asked residents not to call 911 for road conditions or other non-emergency questions.
“Please, if you do not have to travel, don’t. And if you do, make sure your vehicle is sufficiently cleaned off and warmed up and allow sufficient time to reach your destination,” he said. “Drive with caution and make sure family members know your destination and route of travel and check in upon your arrival at your destination.”
When county official issued the State of Emergency on Saturday, they indicated the order could remain in effect for up to five days, or until Wednesday, Dec. 25.