DelDOT Preparing for Nor'easter Expected to Arrive Tonight and Remain Until Saturday
Dover -- Dover - DelDOT crews and contractors are making advance preparations for a Nor'easter that is expected to affect Delaware starting late Thursday night February 7, until Saturday morning February 9. Threats from the storm include snow of up to one inch in northern New Castle County, with rain throughout the balance of the state, some coastal flooding, and strong winds. Wind gusts of up to 45 mph are expected.
DelDOT's road crews are preparing for the storm by inspecting and servicing equipment used in recent weeks for other snow events. The department will also be restocking its salt reserves. DelDOT will also make sure its tree removal equipment, including chain saws, are in working order and portable signs for high water are ready for use.
Decisions will be made late this afternoon on the level of staffing needed for tonight and tomorrow morning. There will most likely be skeleton crews Friday morning and full crews Friday night in New Castle County, but these plans could change based on actual conditions and updated forecasts.
Because the event is expected to start as rain with temperatures above freezing, DelDOT does not plan to treat roads with salt prior to the event as it would wash away. DelDOT will be ready to dispatch trucks with brine should road temperatures begin to drop toward freezing or snow begin to accumulate.
Traffic signal construction and signal maintenance crews will be on call as needed for signals and generators throughout Delaware.
Construction and demolition at the Indian River Inlet
DelDOT's contractor has been engaged in the installation of sheet piling on the side of the road closest to the ocean for several weeks, and are continuing the demolition of the old Indian River Inlet Bridge.
The sheet pile crew will continue installing what sheets they can today and will return Monday to continue their work. They also will be moving their equipment and materials to higher ground areas of the job site as the storm approaches. Most of the sheet piles that have not already been driven are currently stored on high ground. As of this morning 350 linear feet of the 800 linear foot wall has been installed.
Crews demolishing the old Indian River Bridge will work today and tomorrow depending on what weather conditions allow.
Since November DNREC has built up much of dune area immediately north of the bridge with material from the sand by-pass system. The current dune configuration has been able to keep high tide at least 200 feet from the road and appears to be able to withstand higher than normal waves. DNREC is currently pumping material further south of the north bridge abutment. A portion of the temporary sand by-pass line has been left at the north abutment in case additional replenishment is need in the future. DelDOT Maintenance and DNREC crews have also installed a snow and silt fence along Route 1 in an effort to minimize sand blown onto the roadway.
Construction on I-95
There is no Saturday or Sunday construction scheduled on I-95 for either of the state's major construction projects at Rt. 1 and at 202, and contractors will secure their equipment and suspend work whether it rains or snows. The contractor for the Rt. 1 / I-95 interchange will be prepared to lay down their construction cranes if high winds require it.
Normally, there are nighttime lane closures Monday through Friday from 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. Saturday morning for the Route 1/I-95 Interchange Project.
Prime Hook Road
DelDOT has pre-arranged for possible emergency, alternate access to Prime Hook from North Bay Shore Drive should Prime Hook Road flood during or after the storm.