Tamara Rollison 804-786-2715
804-335-5758 – Cell
Oct. 30, 2012
STORM IMPACT ON VIRGINIA’S ROADS – 7:45 AM
Downed trees, secondary road flooding and snow/ice conditions
RICHMOND – Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) crews continue to work around the clock with three major events: flooding, downed trees and snow/ice. At this hour, all interstate and major roads are open. More than 280 roads, mostly secondary roads, are closed across the state. Flooding and downed trees and debris are causing secondary road closures mostly in the northern Virginia, Staunton and eastern Virginia regions.
Although there is no longer a tropical system, the storm is still packing a punch with high gusty winds across the state and blowing and drifting snow in western portions of Virginia.
About six inches of snow is reported in some of Virginia’s western counties and the snow continues this morning. VDOT crews are treating roads to keep them as safe as possible.
In Northern Virginia, HOV restrictions have been lifted on interstates 66, 95, 395 and the Dulles Toll Road. 107 signals throughout northern Virginia are not functioning. Drivers should treat these intersections as four-way stops.
In Hampton Roads, all tunnels, water crossings, interstate highways and primary roads are open in most areas. Two severely impacted areas include Accomack and Northampton counties. In these areas, several secondary roads remain closed due to storm surge flooding and downed trees.
Motorists are urged to limit travel today because of road flooding and debris in the road. Even small branches can damage a vehicle or cause the driver to lose control.
About 1,000 VDOT crews and contractors are working throughout the storm to keep the roads clear as possible and motorists informed of road conditions. VDOT crews are removing debris from roadways, which involves cutting and hauling fallen trees, branches and other obstacles. This is being done in coordination with power crews as they fix power lines. VDOT also assists the Virginia Department of Emergency Management and other state agencies, localities and emergency responders with traffic control, detours and road closures.
For a list of the latest road conditions go to http://www.511virginia.org/mobile/?menu_id=conditions
What to watch out for:
- If a traffic signal is out, drivers are advised to treat the intersection as a four way stop.
- 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 you to lose control and hydroplane.
- Avoid flood-prone areas, especially along creeks and other low-lying areas. Water in those areas can rise quickly and without warning during heavy rains.
- In the event of a flash flood warning for your area, seek high ground immediately.
- Watch for debris on the roadway. If you encounter a downed power line, do not try to move the line. Downed trees may contain power lines. Contact VDOT or Dominion Virginia Power.
Message to motorists:
- Limit travel during height of storm.
- Monitor local weather and traffic reports before getting into the car.
- Before heading out the door, get the latest road conditions by calling 511, visit www.511virginia.org or download the mobile app from the 511 web site.
Other information resources:
Report downed trees or hazardous road conditions – Call VDOT’s Customer Service Center at 1-800-FOR-ROAD (800-367-7623).
Prepare for the storm and find out about other VDOT hurricane preparedness efforts – Visit www.VDOT.Virginia.gov
Hampton Roads area traffic updates are available around the clock on Twitter by following @511hamptonroads. For general VDOT information, follow @VaDOT.
VDOT’s Facebook page will also be updated throughout the storm. https://www.facebook.com/VirginiaDOT
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.