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A tractor-trailer lays twisted on its side on Interstate 91 north in Springfield, one of many Vermont accidents caused by Tuesday’s snowstorm. The driver was not injured.
More than a foot of snow fell across much of the state Tuesday as Vermont and its neighbors find themselves exceeding their snow removal budgets for the winter.
The winter storm began late Monday, and by Tuesday afternoon reported snowfall totals included 9 inches in Waterbury Center at 12:30 p.m. and 6.5 inches near Marshfield at 4 p.m.
Kimberly McMahon, meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Burlington, expected more snow to fall overnight into this morning.
There would be overnight accumulations of 2 to 4 inches and more in the higher elevations, McMahon said Tuesday. “Tomorrow, things will be tapering off in the valleys, with half an inch to an inch of snow and more in the mountains.”
Tuesday’s snow resulted in at least five tractor-trailer crashes, three of which blocked all travel until they could be moved. No serious injuries were reported.
A tractor-trailer crash in the afternoon closed Interstate 89 to all northbound traffic just south of Exit 10 in Waterbury.
Dispatchers in central Vermont also received reports of an accident on Route 100 that took it down to one lane and a tractor-trailer having trouble on Route 302 in Orange.
Around 11 a.m., a tractor-trailer jackknifed on Route 9 in Brattleboro, blocking both lanes just east of the Vermont State Police barracks. Another blocked Route 103 in East Wallingford.
At 1:45 p.m., a tractor-trailer lost control while headed north on Interstate 91 in Springfield, struck a guardrail and overturned, blocking one of the lanes and causing delays. Another tractor-trailer went off the road on Route 9 in Marlboro.
The storm is also affecting budgets.
Vermont is already over budget for snow removal this winter, according to Scott Rogers, director of the operations division for the Agency of Transportation.
“It’s a little early to say if we’re going to have to cut back on any summer projects,” Rogers said. “If we don’t get another storm, we’re going to be OK.”
About one-third of the AOT’s $69 million budget is designated for snow removal. Before this storm, the state had spent $23.7 million and used 110,000 tons of salt on the roads. Last winter, the state spent $19.5 million and used 84,500 tons of salt.
New Hampshire and Massachusetts are similarly over budget for the winter.
Usually, New Hampshire plans to spend around $39 million on snow removal.
“Last winter, we spent $32 million on snow removal. This year, it’s looking more like $45 million,” said Bill Boynton, spokesman for the New Hampshire Department of Transportation.
Massachusetts, which has been pummeled particularly hard this winter, is even further over budget.
“Massachusetts DOT has spent $84 million on snow and ice this season and that amount is expected to rise as wintry weather continues and we receive deliveries of materials and call on our plow truck vendors,” said Sara Lavioe, press secretary for the Massachusetts Department of Transportation.
“Beacon Hill is aware that we have exceeded the $45.5 million budgeted for snow and ice removal which makes a supplemental budget likely in our future. Spring may be here, but we all know that does not necessarily mean the end to plowing and treating roadways.”
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