Joan Morris 703-259-1799
Jennifer McCord 703-259-1779
Feb. 4, 2010
VDOT AT HIGHEST RESPONSE LEVEL FOR WEEKEND STORM
1,800 trucks staged in northern Virginia by noon Friday; drivers asked to avoid travel and make way for plows
CHANTILLY – With forecasts for up to two feet of heavy, wet snow and 30 mile-per-hour wind gusts, the Virginia Department of Transportation is urging drivers to plan ahead, be prepared and avoid travel this weekend. By noon Friday, more than 1,800 trucks—VDOT’s entire fleet in northern Virginia—will be staged and ready to treat roads throughout Fairfax, Loudoun and Prince William counties.
With the tremendous amount of snow forecasted, drivers are asked to avoid travel tomorrow and throughout the weekend—to telework, use transit, and stock up on necessities this evening—so that when crews hit the roads they can treat and plow more efficiently. Five inches of snow or more are expected by tomorrow afternoon’s rush hour alone, with wind gusts up to 30 miles per hour in the evening. These extreme conditions will cause snow to drift, limit visibility and make driving increasingly hazardous.
Today, crews are pre-treating trouble spots on interstates 66, 95, 395, and 495—including bridges and ramps prone to freezing such as the Springfield interchange, I-66 at Route 29 in Gainesville and the Capital Beltway interchange at Route 1—with liquid magnesium chloride. Other major roads, such as the Fairfax County Parkway and routes 1, 7, 28, 29, 50 and 123, are being pre-treated with salt brine.
Through Saturday evening, the I-95/395 high occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes will remain open in the southbound direction. The HOV lanes will be closed for snow removal on Sunday, Feb. 7.
Motorists are encouraged to check current weather, road conditions and traffic cameras before driving during the storm by visiting www.511Virginia.org or by calling 511. For more information on how VDOT prepares for snow, visit www.virginiadot.org/snow.
Information in VDOT news releases was accurate at the time the release was published. For the most current information about projects or programs, please visit the project or program Web pages. You may find those by searching by keyword in the search Virginia DOT box above.