VDOT News - Statewide

RELEASE:

CONTACT:
IMMEDIATE

Marshall M. Herman
marshall.herman@vdot.virginia.gov

CO-190319

Jan. 20, 2022



MOTORISTS MUST STAY OFF ROADS WHILE WINTER STORMS CONTINUE
Refreeze and icy conditions will make roadways dangerous beginning midday Friday through weekend

RICHMOND, Va. – Facing continuing winter storms, Virginia Department of Transportation crews are working around the clock for winter weather today through Saturday. Snow is expected to hit the southeastern area of Virginia midday Friday, Jan. 21. Motorists must stay off the roads in affected regions through Saturday until roads are passable.

Rain and snow from today’s storm, paired with sub-freezing temperatures, will cause dangerous road conditions. Refreeze is expected to impact roads as temperatures drop; anything that looks wet could be ice and dangerous to cross.

Tomorrow’s weather will bring snow to the southeastern portion of the state and possibly as far as central Virginia. Despite mild temperatures in the Hampton Roads area today, the region is likely to receive four inches or more of snow. If travel is absolutely necessary, plan to reach your destination before snow begins. Icing and freezing will also make roads dangerous. Areas where wind circulates more freely, such as bridges, ramps and overpasses typically freeze first.

Crews will treat roads affected by today’s storms, and stand ready for impacts from tomorrow’s winter weather.

Key reminders:

  • The safest place to be during a winter storm is inside. Stay home during winter weather and avoid nonessential travel.
  • If snow or ice is on the road, conditions are hazardous.
  • If travel is unavoidable:
    • Plan to reach your destination before winter weather begins
    • Review forecasts along your entire route and plan your travel around the weather
    • Review and be familiar with alternative routes to your destination
    • Ensure headlights are on and speed aligns with conditions
    • Keep a safe distance of at least five seconds behind the vehicle ahead of you
    • Accelerate and decelerate slowly
    • Brake very lightly to keep your tires from slipping on pavement; do not pump anti-lock brakes
    • Allow crews time and room to treat roads and do not pass snowplows
    • Keep an emergency winter weather kit in your vehicle including food, water, first aid materials, tools and blankets in the event of a breakdown or stoppage
  • Visit https://511virginia.org for the latest road conditions before traveling. If possible, avoid travel until precipitation stops and road conditions improve.

Road-clearing priorities are as follows:

  • Interstates, primary roads and major secondary roads with vital emergency and public facilities, or those with high traffic volumes will be cleared first.
  • Secondary and subdivision streets will be treated in the event of a multi-day storm, but crews will focus efforts on roads that are traveled most.

For more information on winter weather travel, visit virginiadot.org/travel/snow.asp.

Resources:

  • To report hazardous road conditions or talk to a customer service representative, call VDOT’s Customer Service Center at 1-800-FOR-ROAD (800-367-7623) or visit online at my.vdot.virginia.gov
  • VDOT recently partnered with Waze to add a new feature to the navigation software app that allows users to report, in real-time during winter weather, when a road has not been plowed. It will also inform travelers when they are approaching a road that has been identified by other drivers as unplowed.
  • Traffic information is also available on Twitter @511statewideVA; for general VDOT information, follow @VaDOT.

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Page last modified: Jan. 21, 2022