Getting Ready for Spring: Hitting the Road


With the summer road trip season starting, many of us will take off and drive to points all over Pennsylvania and beyond. From the northwest tip of the state surrounding Erie to the southeastern part and the suburbs of Philadelphia, there is no getting around one fact.

Pennsylvania is one long state to traverse.

The Pennsylvania Turnpike runs 360 miles across the state, from northwest of Pittsburgh to outside of Philadelphia, and it winds through flatland, mountains, hilly regions and suburban sprawl before exiting into the next state.

With so many different terrains to pick from it is no wonder why Pennsylvania drivers face changing weather and driving conditions on a daily basis. This is a reason why drivers should maintain their Pennsylvania car insurance click here, no matter whether they are a veteran of the Keystone State or a newcomer to the ways of Pennsylvania driving.

There are no new insurance regulations to worry about at this point. However, for drivers unlucky enough to get into a car accident or wreck, the state of Pennsylvania is making drivers aware of a new phone app called WreckCheck, for IPhone and Android systems.

WreckCheck takes you through the steps needed to create your own accident report by using your cell phone to fill out the necessary details.

What you need to know is speed limits for rural interstate highways are 65 miles an hour, 55 on urban interstates. The limit is also 65 for other limited-access roads not in an urban location. There has been talk about raising this speed limit to 70, but for now drive 65 else someone may catch you that drives a police car.

If you are driving one of the major interstate highways besides the turnpike, there are a few things to know as well:

Interstate 70 enters the state from West Virginia, passes along the southern edge of the Pittsburgh metro area and then exits the state south of Breezewood. Interstate 70 is one of the few highways to feature an at-grade intersection with a traffic light, as the highway leaves the Pennsylvania Turnpike and takes drivers to the left for several hundred feet before turning southbound. This has created bottlenecks to watch out for as I-70 intersects with the turnpike. It is no wonder why 1,000 people are employed on Breezewood’s commercial strip, which is filled with gas stations and restaurants.

The heavily-traveled I-95 corridor enters Pennsylvania by Trenton and leaves for the Wilmington, Delaware area at its southern end. Some parts of I-95,especially those out by the international airport, are choked off with traffic, and the southern end of the city can be hellish when traffic gets onto the road as sports stadiums empty out. Watch out around the Chester area, as this is where the bottleneck usually occurs.

Pittsburgh drivers are not immune to the crush, either. A recent article in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette cited the Parkway West corridor from Green Tree (on the west side of the metro area) to the Fort Pitt tunnels as the ninth-busiest highway in the United States and the busiest outside of either New York or Los Angeles.

In that same article, two portions of the Parkway East corridor (Business US 22 to Squirrel Hill heading west and downtown to Business 22 heading east) are high on the list of choke points.

Driving in Pennsylvania is like driving in any other state at rush hour. Expect some problems at points of the morning or evening, but if you can get past that other parts of the day should be smoother sailing.

If you know ahead of time what happens, driving through the Keystone State should be easier and time spent getting to your destination should be
faster. Happy motoring!