Jennifer McCord 703-259-1779
Feb. 2, 2010
EXTREME CAUTION ADVISED FOR OVERNIGHT TRAVEL
9:45 p.m. update: 1,400 VDOT trucks treating slick and snow-covered roads in northern Virginia
CHANTILLY – With snow falling steadily in northern Virginia and up to six inches expected by rush hour tomorrow morning, the Virginia Department of Transportation urges drivers to use extreme caution if they must drive tonight, and to prepare for tomorrow’s commute by knowing road conditions and allowing plenty of extra time for their trips.
As of 9:45 p.m., about two inches of wet snow has fallen and is beginning to stick on interstates throughout Fairfax, Loudoun and Prince William counties. Snow accumulation is reported on I-495 near the Maryland line and on I-66 near Gainesville.
Drivers are reminded that while roadways may appear clear and wet, they will become deceivingly slick as snow continues to adhere and freeze. Secondary and subdivision streets will become treacherous more quickly.
Crews in more than 1,400 trucks are working through the night to continually treat roadways with salt and sand and begin to plow accumulated snow.
Before leaving tonight or tomorrow morning, motorists are encouraged to call 511 or check current weather, road conditions and traffic camera video at www.511Virginia.org.
VDOT offers the following tips for driving in winter weather:
- Ensure windows, mirrors and lights are clear of ice and snow.
- Allow extra time to travel to your destination.
- Be aware of potentially icy areas such as bridges, overpasses and shady spots.
- Reduce speed and keep a safe distance of at least five seconds behind other vehicles.
- Do not pass a snowplow unless it is absolutely necessary.
- Keep an emergency winter driving kit in your car, including a small bag of rock salt, sand or cat litter to provide traction in case you get stuck, a snowbrush and ice scraper, a flashlight, battery booster cables, a blanket and extra clothing.
- Practice common sense. Remember that your car cannot start, stop, or turn as quickly and surely on snow or ice as it does on dry pavement.
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.