Wilmington, DE – With a severe winter storm generating significant snowfall throughout Delaware, Governor Jack Markell has declared a State of Emergency that includes a statewide “Level 1 Driving Warning,” effective immediately.
DECLARATION OF A STATE OF EMERGENCY AND LEVEL I DRIVING WARNING DUE TO A SEVERE WINTER STORM
WHEREAS, a severe winter storm is generating and will continue to generate significant snowfall accumulations in the State of Delaware; and
WHEREAS, the severe winter storm includes heavy snowfall and gusting winds, resulting in significantly decreased visibility, snow drifts and other road hazards that make driving dangerous and creating potentially life-threatening conditions; and
WHEREAS, the predicted weather conditions will likely continue to create dangerous and potentially life-threatening road conditions and may result in additional public safety responses;
NOW THEREFORE, I, JACK A. MARKELL, pursuant to Title 20, Chapter 31 of the Delaware Code, do hereby declare a State of Emergency for the State of Delaware. This State of Emergency will be effective as of January 21, 2014 at 2:00 p.m. E.S.T., and shall continue until terminated as provided under state law. The nature of the emergency is heavy snowfall and potentially high winds. Along with such other actions authorized by Title 20, Chapter 31 of the Delaware Code, I specifically direct and authorize:
1. All departments and agencies of the State of Delaware shall assist in response and recovery activities, as directed by and in coordination with the Delaware Emergency Management Agency (DEMA), in consultation with the Secretary of the Department of Safety and Homeland Security (DSHS), necessary in those areas affected by the storm.
2. As of January 21, 2014 at 2:00 p.m. E.S.T., and until further notice, a Level 1 Driving Warning is in effect. Any person operating a motor vehicle shall exercise extra caution in the operation of that vehicle for the duration of the emergency. Nonessential employees, regardless of whether employed by a public or private entity, are encouraged not to operate a motor vehicle for the duration of the emergency, unless there is a significant safety, health or business reason to do so. State and local officials are directed to remove abandoned vehicles from roads in affected areas at the expense of the vehicle owner.
3. The Delaware National Guard shall take precautionary or responsive actions directed by the Director of DEMA, in consultation with the Secretary of DSHS, upon request by local authorities.
4. I authorize the Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT) and the Delaware State Police, in consultation with DEMA and the Secretary of DSHS, to order such bridge and road closures as necessary to protect the health and safety of the public.
5. I reserve the right to take or direct state or local authorities to take, without issuance of further written order, any other necessary actions authorized by Title 20, Chapter 31 of the Delaware Code to respond to this emergency.
APPROVED this 21st day of January, 2014, at 2:00 p.m.