VDOT News - Richmond

RELEASE:

CONTACT:
IMMEDIATE - 4:30 a.m.

Sara Owens 804-586-1446; Media Inquiries: 804-586-4455
Sara.Owens@VDOT.Virginia.gov

RICH-174042

Feb. 12, 2021



AVOID TRAVEL IF POSSIBLE THIS MORNING, BELOW FREEZING TEMPERATURES, CREWS ON THE MOVE
Road conditions range from clear to moderate

SOUTH CHESTERFIELD, Va. – Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) Richmond District crews spent Thursday night mobilized for the snow and freezing rain that began falling overnight. Crews treated roadways earlier in the evening with salt to melt ice and sand to enhance traction for drivers. In areas where snow has accumulated above two inches, plowing operations are ongoing. Road conditions range from clear in the southernmost counties to moderate in the north. With heavy snowfall and falling temperatures, road conditions can deteriorate rapidly.

Drivers are strongly encouraged to avoid nonessential travel Friday.  If travel cannot be avoided, drivers should expect reduced visibility and potentially hazardous conditions until precipitation ends. 

Crews will continue working in 12-hour shifts until all roads are safe and passable. Interstate routes will be addressed first, followed by primary routes (numbered 1-599) and major secondary routes (numbered 600+). From there, crews will turn their attention to neighborhood streets. All cities and towns in the Richmond District provide their own snow clearance, and Henrico County maintains its own secondary route system.

Additional Safety Service Patrol vehicles as well as towing contractors continue to be on the interstates to assist with traffic incidents. Tree crews also remain on standby to remove debris from travel lanes or potential fallen trees due to ice.

Tips for drivers

  • Continue to delay unnecessary travel until road conditions are safe. 
  • Driving is most dangerous when the temperature is at or under 32 degrees (freezing). A good rule to follow is if the temperature outside is at or below freezing and the road is wet, there will likely be ice, particularly on the shaded areas, bridges, ramps and overpasses, since they tend to freeze first.
  • If travel is essential, drivers should reduce their speed and leave a safe distance of at least five seconds behind other vehicles and trucks that are plowing the road. 
  • If you begin to skid, do not brake suddenly. Take your foot off the gas and steer the vehicle in the direction you want to go, pumping your brakes lightly.
  • Give snow plows plenty of room (at least 100 feet) and don't pass them.
  • Keep an eye on local forecasts. Check 511 and other local resources for the latest conditions near you. 
  • Call 800-FOR-ROAD (800-367-7623) or visit https://my.vdot.virginia.gov/ any time, 24/7, to report road hazards.

Road Condition Definitions

During winter storms, road conditions are present on 511Virginia using three ratings: minor, moderate and severe. These terms are defined as the following:

  • Minor: Potential for patches of ice and snow on roadway; passable with caution.
  • Moderate: Snow or ice is covering major portions of the roadway; passable with caution.
  • Severe: A significant accumulation of snow or ice is blocking the roadway; conditions are hazardous.

Information resources

511 Virginia

Before traveling, you can get the latest traffic conditions by using 511 Virginia. Call 511 from any phone in Virginia, visit www.511virginia.org or download the free mobile app at http://www.virginiadot.org/travel/511.asp#app.

Social media

Twitter: For area information, follow
@VaDOTRVA and @511centralva

Facebook: Visit VDOT’s statewide page and follow the Richmond District group: https://www.facebook.com/VirginiaDOT

Customer service center

Report road hazards or ask road-related questions at VDOT’s 24-hour Customer Service Center by calling 800-FOR-ROAD (800-367-7623) or using the online form available at
https://my.vdot.virginia.gov/ 

Additional resources

For more winter driving information, please visit VDOT's winter weather page

 

-END-

VDOT’s Richmond District oversees snow removal activities on approximately 19,000 lane miles of roads in 14 counties in central Virginia: Amelia, Brunswick, Charles City, Chesterfield, Dinwiddie, Goochland, Hanover, Henrico (primary routes only), Lunenburg, Mecklenburg, New Kent, Nottoway, Powhatan and Prince George counties. Henrico County provides snow removal for their secondary roads (numbered 600 and above) and subdivision streets. Cities that provide their own snow removal include Colonial Heights, Hopewell, Petersburg and Richmond, and the towns of Ashland, Blackstone, Chase City and South Hill.







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.

Page last modified: Feb. 12, 2021