Sandy Myers 540-332-9201
Ken Slack 540-332-9264
Jan. 26, 2010
ROADS REMAIN CLOSED DUE TO FLOODING IN PARTS OF SHENANDOAH VALLEY
STAUNTON – (4:30 a.m.) Primary and secondary roads remain closed in portions of the Shenandoah Valley. Heavy rains and melting snow left many areas in lower elevations to experience flooding conditions. The Virginia Department of Transportation cautions that roads will remain hazardous as long as they are covered by water and motorists should heed the barricades and “Road Closed” signs.
Primary roads closed in the VDOT Staunton district:
• Rockbridge County – Route 39 (Maury River Road) at Route 42 (Virginia Avenue); Route 251 from Route 612 (Blue Grass Trail) to Route 677 (Kygers Hill Road).
• Augusta County – Ramp area off of Interstate 64 at Route 250. This is exit 99 at Afton Mountain.
It is unknown at this time when these roads will be open.
Route 11 has opened in the Mount Jackson area of Shenandoah County in the vicinity of Meems Bottom. The closing was a result of high water.
VDOT crews barricaded flooded roads and are removing tree limb debris from roadways throughout the area. Once flood waters recede, VDOT road crews will assess pavement conditions and remove debris prior to reopening roads.
The public can view maps and also get a text listing of all road closures by visiting www.511Virginia.org. On the Web site, look to the left side of the page and click on the “Road Conditions” bar. A map will appear with color coded roads. Right above the map is a link reading: “Click here for a list of road conditions, including secondary roads”. Click on this link, then in the drop-down box click on the desired county or Virginia statewide. A text box of road conditions will appear. Click on the text for the road listing and a map with that road segment will appear.
Motorists are urged to avoid travel during flooding. If you must drive, observe the following precautions:
• Expect the unexpected. Be prepared to slow or stop quickly and without warning.
• At night, drive at a speed that enables you to stop quickly and safely within the distance illuminated by the vehicle’s headlights.
• Never drive through water flowing across a road. It takes only six to 12 inches of water to float a small vehicle.
• Never drive around barricades. Remember, the road has been closed for your safety.
• Slow down when driving through standing water. Driving too fast through water could cause loss of control due to hydroplaning.
• Avoid flood-prone areas, especially along creeks and other low-lying areas.
• If a flash flood warning is broadcast, seek high ground immediately.
• Be alert for tree limbs and other debris in the roadway. Even small branches and other debris can damage a car or cause the driver to lose control.
• Assume all fallen power lines are electrified and dangerous. Never attempt to drive across, step over or move fallen utility lines.
• The danger is greatest in areas where trees are near to or overhanging the roadway. Use extra caution when driving in those areas.
The VDOT Staunton District serves Frederick, Shenandoah, Clarke, Warren, Page, Rockingham, Augusta, Highland, Rockbridge, Alleghany and Bath counties.
Traffic alerts and traveler information can be obtained by dialing 511. In areas where 511 is unavailable, dial 1-866-MY511VA (866-695-1182) (TTY/TDD users, call 711). Traffic alerts and traveler information also are available at 511Virginia.org.
Highway safety is everyone’s responsibility. Virginia’s highway safety partnership — the Virginia Department of Transportation, Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles and Virginia State Police — challenges you to help prevent highway fatalities. Buckle up. Avoid distractions. Share the road. Drive drug- and alcohol-free. Obey speed limits. For more information on the Highway Safety Challenge and things you can do to avoid becoming Virginia’s next traffic fatality, visit www.safeVAhighways.org.
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.