Route 228 in Cranberry Township reopened

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PITTSBURGH - The news drivers have been waiting for has finally arrived. Route 228 in Cranberry Township reopened to commuters Friday morning.

 Channel 11 News was there early Friday as cars hit the road immediately after the busy roadway was opened. 

Initially, there was a one lane restriction eastbound so that West Penn Power can finish up some work on the shoulder, officials said.

Crews working to remove downed power and cable lines have been on the job since Tuesday evening. Nine power poles were knocked over or snapped in half when an isolated, yet strong storm moved through the area. 

Officials estimate as many as 40,000 to 50,000 cars pass through the area on a daily basis.

The closure had lasted longer than officials and drivers expected.

“There were some complications initially with materials, primarily the telephone poles because of the size of them and to obtain them here.  The length of the cleanup its taking a little bit longer,” said Chuck Mascellino of Cranberry Township Police.

Drivers said the closure has nearly doubled commute times.

“My husband works in Bridgeville, and coming home a couple of nights ago and getting home, it is doubling his drive time,” said Christina Morascyzk.

Tuesday’s storms also caused heavy damage in Crescent Township.

Channel 11’s Brandon Hudson reported a downed power line on Harper Road. Officials told him about 350 homes lost power in the township.

Judy Neugent told Hudson a tree crashed onto her house above the kitchen.

“I was in the living room talking to my husband and we heard a loud, ‘bang,’” Neugent said.

The storm also caused some damage on McGovern Boulevard, including at St. Catherine of Siena Catholic Church.

"Most of the damage stayed over on this side. Fortunately nothing touched down on the buildings in the church and rectory,” said Rev. Lou Vallone.

Channel 11's Jennifer Tomazic reported major flooding in Franklin Township in the area of Country Club Drive.

“This is pretty incredible.  I’ve seen the creek come up numerous times, but I’ve never seen it come up quite so quickly,” said Police Chief Brian Speer.

“It looked to be about a foot deep and having a Jeep, you can get through it, but you have to be careful,” said homeowner Randy Herbe.